Although Jeff had never been much for any shopping that didn’t involve a video game store, he thoroughly enjoyed watching Becca’s face light up as she tried on clothes that actually fit her. True to her word, she only purchased a few pairs of maternity jeans, some long t-shirts, and a dress. Jeff encouraged her to get more, but she insisted that Fionna was going to loan her all of her maternity clothes as soon as the Vindico’s baby was born.
They walked further down the mall and Jeff ordered himself to man up. Though he’d certainly never been lingerie shopping with Becca he needed to really be her husband he decided.
“Baby, why don’t you get a couple of bras that actually fit?” He was well aware that her breasts had doubled in size.
“You are just way too sweet. Are you sure that’s okay? Bras are expensive.”
“You’re having our baby. I want you to be as comfortable as you possibly can be. I want to take care of you. I can’t buy you everything I’d like to be able to, but those are actually two of my very favorite things so I don’t want them to hurt,” he teased as he followed her into a large lingerie shop.
Jeff tried to convince himself that it was perfectly normal to be in a lingerie shop with his wife and not look like a total perv while he waited on her outside the dressing rooms. He sincerely wished that the sales women would stop asking him if he needed any help picking something out though.
Becca finally emerged carrying two bras looking like Jeff had just given her precious jewels. She was biting her nails and debating something.
“What?” Jeff urged. Delicate pink heat creeped up her neck and bloomed across her cheeks.
“I was just wondering if I could make you go away for a few minutes. I want to get something to wear tonight to surprise you. But since I had to ask it’s kind of not a surprise,” she lamented.
Jeff didn’t want to give her a budget or tell her she couldn’t buy anything too expenisve, but he also didn’t want to miss a rent payment to the Haydenshires.
“You don’t have to wear anything special for me Bec. You’re beautiful just the way you are.”
Disappointment cast her features as she nodded and tried to force a smile.
“You know what, if that’s really what you want to get, go ahead. I’ll go get us a Dr. Pepper,” he offered shutting down the plaguing murmurs in his mind. It was one night and it was what she wanted.
“Are you sure? I won’t spend much,” Becca pledged.
“What guy in his right mind turns down lingerie for his wife?”
When her sweet grin was accompanied by her rhythms lilting in excitement, it was worth it in Jeff’s book no matter what it cost. He’d be getting another big bonus by the end of the weekend anyway.
Sitting in the food court waiting on Becca, Jeff tried to mentally determine when he thought he’d be able to take his exams and still keep his 3.0 GPA. He didn’t feel right using the posted exams for studying anymore since he now knew they weren’t being posted by mentors. That was going to make it much more difficult. Deciding that he’d broach Mentor Vindico about tutoring him when they returned from Hawaii, Jeff smiled as Becca slid into the chair in front of him.
“Dinner was delicious. I’ve never eaten there before,” she continued to gush about their evening as Jeff drove her home.
“I’m glad you liked it.” He wasn’t surprised she’d never eaten there. Her parents typically took them to places nicer than the Tavern, and whenever he took her out he couldn’t afford much more than burgers or pizza especially if they were going to see a movie.
The hefty paycheck that would come with being an Elite Officer would afford them meals out at places like the Tavern much more often. He just had to get out of Venton as soon as possible.
“And I never thought I would be so excited to buy jeans,” she continued. Her fingers laced through Jeff’s as he drove just the way they always used to ride. Before they’d gone from relatively happy-go-lucky kids to full-fledged adults in one afternoon when they’d let their libidos overrule their brains.
“I’m gonna miss you tomorrow,” she added hesitantly.
“I hate I have to work but that’s a pretty hefty paycheck for one weekend.”
“I know. I don’t mind you working. It’s just been a little tense lately and I miss you. I miss us.” Her confession rode in on a half-haunted whisper.
“I’m sorry, Bec. I just let everything get to me this week. Now that I know I made Elite and that I can start as soon as I take all of my exams. I feel like we can handle this. I can do this.”
“I know. I’m so proud of you. You’ve worked really hard.” She always made him feel like a king. Now, he just had to show her that she would always be his queen.
Settling on the sofa, Jeff flipped through the folder of information Portwood had given him before he left work while Becca put away her new clothes.
When she made her reappearance, she held up her cell phone. “Do you have any idea why my dad’s called eight times?”
Grimacing slightly, he prayed she wouldn’t be mad. He didn’t want anything to ruin his plans for the evening. They needed to reconnect. She’d bought lingerie to wear for him. So far everything was perfect and they needed this.
“Possibly,” he hemmed.
She raised her eyebrows. “Possibly?”
“I might’ve said something to him before I left work.”
Though the delighted grin was not was he was expecting, Jeff was overjoyed to see it form on Becca’s face.
“What did you say?” She settled beside him on the couch. Her eyes shimmered in the lamplight. Intrigue, defiance, and rebellion paraded through her gaze.
“He demanded that I bring you over there tonight, since I was getting off early.” He wrapped his arm over Becca’s shoulders as she cuddled into him.
“I was moderately polite at first,” Jeff declared but that wasn’t what she wanted to hear. “I said that I was taking you out tonight. And then he did his whole you are aware that she’s my daughter,” he mimicked her father’s voice derisively. Her grin returned. “I said that I was aware of that. But that you were my wife.”
The hungry storm swirling in her eyes lit explosively and Jeff was woefully unable to look away.
“Wow.” she whispered. She stared up at him as her hand slipped over his crotch. Since what she was after was on prominent display, she moaned and palmed with more force.
That was it. He was done for. He didn’t give a damn about her parents or whom he’d pissed off. He wanted her. She was his and he was going to take what belonged to him.
His lips met hers in a hungry storm. His right hand trailed to her swollen breasts. He trapped her moan in his mouth.
“That’s it, baby. Grab me. You make me so damn hard,” he husked as he kept his kisses deep and penetrating. When she gasped for air, he continued. “I want to be inside of you. I want you wrapped tight around me.”
“Oh God, yes,” she hissed. Their energy began to roll together filled with rebellion and craving need. The world had taken too much and he wouldn’t allow it anymore. Everything else could just wait outside the door because he had other plans for the next several hours.
Whatever she’d purchased to wear for him that night could wait as well. He wanted her naked, wet, and writhing. Feeling her hot flesh meld with his as he made her his own.
He pulled the sweater over her head. A deep, guttural groan escaped his lungs as her breasts spilled into his waiting hands, hot and heavy. Her nipples were puckered, so tight they had to ache with need. They needed his attention and he was only too happy to provide.
Lowering his mouth to her breasts he listened to her furtive moans as he spun his tongue over them moving back and forth. She arched her back and he drew her right breast deeply in his mouth, sucking her forcefully, pulling the erotic energy from one of her storehouses. He let it fill him before he moved to the left.
Becca was on fire. Her moans were unending. Desperate desire surged through her energy. She shoved Jeff back on the couch. He sat mesmerized as she shimmied out of her jeans and panties. Her lush tits teased at his chin as she straddled over his crotch buck naked and hoisted her cleavage in his face.
“My God, baby. You are so fucking sexy.” There was just enough blood that had remained in his brain to wonder just how wild she might want to be.
Telling off her father seemed to have tapped into a vast well of tension and rebellion that she wanted him to indulge in before he soothed.
Deciding to see just how she might like it, he stripped as well and then reclined on the couch. “Come here to me,” he commanded. “Do that over my face.”
“Yes!” she gasped as she followed his instructions. He grasped her thick backside firmly and then let his tongue lap at her swollen lips dripping wet with voracious need. He gorged himself on her juices before dipping his tongue deeply between her folds, listening to her moans of ecstasy. It had been too damn long. She needed to come undone and he planned to see just how many times he could accomplish that task.
“In my mouth, baby,” he ordered. “Come on my tongue. Give it to me. I want to drink you. Right now.” He’d never been quite so demanding in bed but she sure as hell seemed to like it.
Her breath caught. Her body tensed. Her rhythms spiked hard and she screamed out his name. Her energy unfurled and she filled his mouth with the liquid form of her energy.
When she regained the ability to move, she slid back down his body as he sat up positioning her over his lap. Her fingers danced along his cock, taunting him.
He wrapped his hand over hers, jacking himself. “That what you want, baby?” He groaned from the heavenly sensation. “You hungry for me?”
“Now,” she began making demands of her own and Jeff was quite certain she’d never been sexier.
He wrapped his fingers around her waist, digging his fingers in her ass, and thrust up into her unable to wait any longer. She gasped from the force and then moaned her adamant approval as she began to ride him. He caught her left breast in his mouth sucking her as she rocked. Releasing her breast, he worked his hand down her torso and brushed his thumb over her distended clit.
“Jeff. Yes,” she panted.
“Feels good doesn’t it?” he demanded as her rhythms tightened and spun. A moment later, her release pulsed around him fiercely. He refused to give in to the desperation to fill her full of his energy. Their night wasn’t ending yet.
He began to buck, forcing himself in deeper, watching her head fall back as he pumped her full. He wanted her to have more.
“That feels so good,” she moaned.
She began to rock faster. She wanted more as well.
Suddenly, she fell forward. Her breasts smashed into his face as she spiraled undone. This time he lost it all.
He flooded her with his energy. She gave as good as she got. Her channel cinched tightly around him. He couldn’t tell where she stopped and he began. It was the way their world should always be. He held her tightly unwilling to withdraw until he had to.
A little while later, he held her tenderly on his chest in their bed. He was playing with her hair, reveling in her energy rolling through him in languid satisfaction.
“If I’d known telling your dad off was gonna get me that, I would have done it a long time ago.” She dissolved into adorable giggles.
“That was really hot. And you telling my dad off was really, really hot. Can we please just not fight anymore because I need more of that?”
“I am so good with a whole lot more of that. Just no more credit cards, okay?”
“Deal,” she vowed.
“I love you.” She traced her fingers over his bare chest.
“I love you too, Bec, so much.”
He cradled her on his chest as her breaths steadied. He laid awake in the moonlight thinking of all he needed and wanted to do over the next few months. He was going to make this work.
“Jeff!” Becca gasped. “Jeff, wake up!”
Scrubbing his hands over his face, he sat up. “What, baby?” As he moved, the blankets fell away from her and he saw. She was lying in a pool of her own blood.
“Oh my God!” Terror snaked in the pit of his stomach. His predilection took over instantly. His shield surrounded her, centering itself around her womb. “We have to go to the hospital. I’m calling Adeline.”
Becca tried to stand but quickly fell back to the bed. “I’m dizzy.” Grabbing his cell phone and a pair of her sweatpants, Jeff phoned Logan as he helped her dress.
She clung to him as he quickly explained what had happened to Logan and then to Adeline.
“I’ll meet you at Georgetown. Leave right now. Tell Becca to wear a pad to keep the blood from getting everywhere. Jeff, I need you to tell me if you can still feel the baby’s energy,” Adeline ordered.
Impending doom crashed through him as he guided her back to the bed.
“Just try to relax. Okay?” he soothed.
“What are you doing?” Tears streamed down her face.
“Deep breaths for me.” Trying to suppress his own energy as best as he was able, he locked onto hers.
Realizing what he was attempting to locate, Becca tried to be brave. It broke Jeff’s heart watching her. She was trembling in terror and weak from all of the blood she’d lost. And then against all odds, hope sprang from the depths of his harrowing fear.
“I feel him,” he gasped in the phone to Adeline.
“Get her to Georgetown. I’ll meet you there,” she assured him. He ended the call.
“Adeline says to wear a pad to the hospital. She’s gonna meet us there. It’s gonna be all right.” He hoped against hope that he wasn’t lying to his wife.
Feeling the need to move pulse constantly through him, Jeff eased Becca from the car and into the emergency room of Georgetown. True to her word, Adeline was waiting on them. She and a team of other medios guided Becca into a wheelchair.
“We’re going upstairs. As soon as we get her in a bed, I want you to cast her. I want to see if we can’t get her a little stronger while I figure out what’s going on,” Adeline instructed.
“Of course,” Jeff nodded.
“Becca would you like Logan to call your parents?” Adeline asked sweetly.
Becca nodded and clung to Jeff’s hand as he ran beside her.
“I’m on it,” Logan assured as one of the nurses casted the elevator and it shot to the third floor.
Jeff tried to steady his own heartbeat as he helped Becca change into a hospital gown. He guided her into the bed and set his shield over her immediately.
“Soothing and a little heat,” Adeline instructed.
He filled his shield with as much soothing energy as he was able at the moment. He felt Becca ease and her muscles release slightly.
“Okay, lower it,” Adeline guided a few minutes later. She pulled the gown up and Jeff clenched his jaw. He didn’t even know the two men standing in the room staring down at his wife.
Suddenly, Adeline’s hands were on Becca’s abdomen and there was a picture on a computer monitor by Becca’s head.
A nurse moved to the other side of the bed and began reading Becca’s energy waves.
“She has a UTI. It’s pretty bad,” the nurse informed.
“What is that?” Jeff demanded. “What’s a UTI?”
Adeline offered him a kind smile. “Just a bladder infection. That’s part of the problem but that’s not causing this amount of bleeding. We’ll get that healed up in just a minute,” she soothed. “It’s the placenta.” The other Medios nodded morosely. “I may be able to move it but we need to get her stable.”
“What’s happening?” Becca pled.
“Governor Sapman has just arrived, and the Crown, along with the Lawsons, and the first lady,” a nurse marched into the room and shut the door back firmly.
“You’re going to be all right, Becca. The placenta has moved over your cervix. That’s causing you to bleed. I’m fairly certain that I can lock onto the energy in your womb and readjust everything. But a few things are going to have to change. I need you to really relax for me. I’m going to go outside and talk to Jeff and then your parents. Then we’re going to take you in to surgery,” Adeline explained everything that was going to happen.
Terror flooded through Becca’s rhythms. “I’m not leaving her,” Jeff decreed vehemently.
“Jeff.” Adeline shook her head. “She’s going to be fine. Medio Metzger is going to cast her and heal the UTI then get her calm. You’re just too frantic. I need to talk to you. She’s the Governor’s daughter. She’ll have twenty-four hour care. We’re going to get you both through this, but I need you to come out in the hallway with me and let them work.” Her tone was soothing but Jeff sensed that he didn’t really have a choice.
“I’ll be okay,” Becca tried to sound convincing and failed miserably.
“Baby,” Jeff shook his head. He just couldn’t leave her. She looked so small, and weak, and terrified. He was her shield.
“Just for a minute, Jeff. You need to sign some papers and then you can come right back. I’ll let you go into surgery with her. She should only be in for a half hour or so. Then we’ll bring you back in here and you can stay with her constantly, okay?” Adeline commanded.
“Go on. I’m all right,” Becca assured him.
“I’ll be right back.” Jeff kissed her forehead and squeezed her hand. His heart relocated to his throat as he followed Adeline into the hallway.
“George, you are insane. You have got to get over this. I will do nothing of the sort,” the Crown Governor was furious as he barked at Governor Sapman.
Mrs. Sapman rushed to Jeff. “Is she okay?”
Jeff wasn’t entirely certain the correct answer. “I think so.”
“Becca is going in to surgery soon, Mrs. Sapman. Right now our concern is the baby,” Adeline informed Jeff’s mother-in-law. “I just need a moment with Jeff.”
Logan offered Jeff a hopeful smile which he tried to return.
“Alone,” Adeline ordered Mrs. Sapman away.
Governor Sapman glared at Jeff. With a slight shudder, he turned his attention back to Adeline blocking out his father-in-law’s derisive gaze. His mother rushed into the hospital. She offered Jeff her kind soothing smile. The same smile she’d been giving him his entire life. Drawing from that feeling, he focused on Becca.
“This is going to be husband trial-by-fire, I guess,” Adeline sighed as she took in Governor and Mrs. Sapman.
“I don’t care what they think just tell me what we need to do,” Jeff commanded. The deeply impressed looks he received from the Haydenshires, Rainer, Logan, and his mother strengthened his resolve.
“There is some thinning of her uterine wall. I’m going to try and repair that along with her cervix but this surgery is risky. If this works, there’s still a good chance she won’t carry to term. She’ll be on bed rest for a long time.”
Jeff managed a breath. The scents of antiseptic and commercial cleaners filled his lungs. “I’ll do anything she needs, just tell me how we do bed rest.”
“She’s going to have to stay here until I’m confident everything will stay where I move it. Unless there is significant improvement, she may not be able to return to work and school.” Adeline lamented.
“We’re out of school this week anyway. Maybe she’ll be a lot better by then. I’ll tell Portwood I can’t work. I’ll stay home and take care of her,” he vowed.
“Hey, man, you don’t have to do that. We can help.” Logan eased near his wife.
“The Angels don’t practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I’ll stay with her then,” Emily immediately volunteered.
“I’m off Mondays, sweetheart, and I can take off another day this week as well,” Jeff’s mother reassured.
“I’ll come over and stay with her, Jeff,” Mrs. Sapman moved away from her husband to reassure her son-in-law.
Adeline didn’t look as shocked by the outcry of support as Jeff certainly felt.
“She really just needs to rest and stay off of her feet,” Adeline guided. “And also pelvic rest,” Adeline lowered her voice so only Jeff could hear her.
Nodding his understanding, Jeff assumed that meant that they couldn’t have sex, but he decided he would ask about that after he was certain Becca and the baby were going to be fine.
Suddenly, Governor Sapman shoved his way through the gathered crowd. “This is ridiculous. Obviously, this just wasn’t meant to be. Just get rid of it. Heal my daughter. Let’s get this divorce over with and get on with our lives.”
Fury rocked Jeff to the core. His body spasmed from the Governor’s words.
Mentor Vindico raced up the corridor. But Jeff could hardly see his favorite Mentor’s face through the red haze of infuriated energy that pulsed from his body.
“Jeff, don’t,” he heard Mentor Vindico’s warning tone. Vindico had overheard Governor Sapman’s decrees but Jeff didn’t care.
“We are not getting divorced,” he raged in the Governor’s face. “Whether she loses the baby or not, we are married and we will be married forever. I can’t fucking believe that you actually want her to lose our child.” The realization slammed through him like he’d been hit in the face with a brick. “That you want her to go through that kind of heartache and pain! What is wrong with you?” Jeff demanded hatefully. “You know what,” he shook his head too furious to continue contemplating his father in law’s thoughts. He turned back to Adeline. “I’ll do anything you need. Just get my wife and my little boy taken care of. Make them okay, please. That’s all that matters to me.” Then glaring back at his father-in-law he spat. “Because I love them. That’s what he wanted isn’t it?” He turned on Governor Haydenshire. “He wanted you to start the divorce papers?” He realized suddenly what had upset Governor Haydenshire when he’d first left Becca’s room. That’s what he’d been arguing with Governor Sapman about. Shaking his head in abject disbelief, Jeff gave a final order. “Keep him the hell away from Becca.”
“He cannot order me away from my child,” Governor Sapman sneered defiantly.
“Actually, sir, he can,” Adeline informed the Governor.