Three weeks later, the newlywed couple returned from the lavishly honeymoon, with happy memories. But after touring half of Greece, spending time together and enjoying every moment, they both agreed to one thing, missing a certain Joe base, and everyone that lived there, including Shipwreck.
Returning home, they shared their adventures on Mount Olympus that should had been a two night hike, turning into a five night hike, because a certain half Scot wouldn't ask directions, even in Greek. Colleen quickly learned many Greek words and used all the colorful ones at her husband, every time they climbed over another hill, only to find another hill. But it was when they almost fell off a cliff, she used her most long and colorful Greek vocabulary.
Everything had returned to normal at G. I. Joe headquarters, well, almost normal. Seemed that two little girls let lose an army of tarantulas all around the base, causing havoc. Duke barked orders from above his desk, holding the intercom and demanding that everyone one of those eight-legged enemy should be captured and sent to the Zoo via Sky Striker.
Cayden had returned back his daily routine of injuries and headaches from his patients, while his wife returned back to her daily routine of combat training and writing.
Colleen had been called to the mailroom early in the morning, discovering a lost letter addressed to her, weeks lost in the mail pile. Her heart skipped a beat, opening it and a shriek filled the room, while she burst into speed and rushing toward her parents' suite.
"Cayden! Mom! Dad! Mom Dad!" she cried out, bursting into the room at top speed, slamming the door against the wall, rattling the pictures.
Scarlett and Jaye glanced up from the photo album, as they were looking through, while Flint, Duke, Jeffrey, Cayden glanced up from the football game, and Eryn with Rowan in hand, rushed out of the bedroom.
"What's got you so fired up?" Duke asked, looking to his red-faced daughter.
"Colly, you okay?" Eryn asked worriedly.
Jaye looked at her daughter-in-law questioningly.
Cayden stood up, closed the door and walked over to his wife. "What is it, Honey?"
Colleen panted heavily from her run. "I..I..." she try to say.
Flint looked at her in alarm. "Is something wrong?"
Scarlett glanced at her daughter. "Colleen?"
Rowan ran to her mother's arms, watching her sister, trying to catch her breath.
"I... I..." Colleen tried to say once again, trying to speak.
"Easy, Bunny," Cayden said rubbing her back. "Take a deep breath then tell us."
Colleen turned to him and screamed at the top of her lungs, close to his face. "I GOT IT!!"
"Got what, Bunny?" Cayden asked, looking deep into her deep blue eyes.
Scarlett shot her husband a worried look, while holding her younger daughter.
Flint stood up and walked closer to the couple.
"I got the scholarship!" Colleen announced. She rose the letter for everyone's eyes. "I should had received this months ago, but somehow, P.O. misplaced it. I'm late starting this semester but I can start the next."
"To where?" Cayden asked.
Jaye looked at Scarlett and Duke worriedly.
Colleen looked at him in shock. "Cayden! The Scholarship that I wanted in N.Y.U."
Scarlett's eyes widened. "You got in the writer's program?"
Colleen nodded enthusiastically.
"Where's N.Y.U.?" Rowan asked in a small voice.
Cayden smiled and picked up his wife and swung her around.
"Congratulations, Colly," Jaye said.
"I knew you could do it, Sis," Jeff added, with a broad grin.
"That's my girl," came from Duke.
"Can I go wif you, Colly?" Eryn asked.
"Cayden," Colleen giggled, "I'm getting dizzy." Still swinging around in his arms.
Flint whistled. "Way to go, Little Red!"
Rowan looked up at her mother. "Does this mean Colleen has to leave us?"
"No, Rosey," Cayden said putting his wife down. "She can stay here and go to classes during the day.
Colleen nodded. "I'm only going to be going once a week. I plan to take all of my classes in one day."
"Wouldn't you be overdoing it?" Scarlett asked skeptically.
"Not really, Mom." Colleen replied, continuing to smile. "There's more."
"More?" Flint asked. "By any chance did you find the missing clowns from the circus?"
"What else is there?" Cayden asked.
Eryn reached up for her father to pick her up.
Flint picked up his little girl, holding her tightly, while her head rested on his shoulder. He took off his beret and put it on his daughter.
Colleen went to reply, when she felt a little lightheaded and grabbed Cayden's arm for support.
Cayden wrapped his arms around her. "Colleen?"
Duke and Jeffrey noticed this and stood up.
"Colleen..." Scarlett gently said, now getting concerned.
"It's nothing. Really. It must be from the running," Colleen answered.
"She didn't eat her panniecakes this morning." Rowan pointed out, looking at her mother. "Eryn ate them."
Eryn nodded. "Yep wif wots of syrup. They were yummy." She rubbed her stomach for emphasis.
"Colleen..." Cayden warned, his eyes narrowing.
"I'm fine, wasn't hungry this morning. That's all." Colleen reassured him.
Scarlett stood up from the couch. "Let me get you something to eat. And no, you are not eating your father's gummy bears!" She headed toward the kitchen.
"Mom, wait," Colleen called out. "Let me tell my news first."
"Alright." Scarlett stopped by the kitchen's door.
"We're listening, Pumpkin." Duke urged her.
Colleen nodded, holding on to her husband's arm. "Well, you all know that I've been writing."
Flint chuckled. "Not really, I haven't noticed. I thought you just stared at that laptop." Everyone moaned at his bad joke.
The door slowly opened and Sky Dancer came rushing in. "Duke—" she stopped in mid-track, staring at everyone, and her features turned into concern. "Is something wrong?"
"Come in and sit," Cayden told his friend.
Jeffrey smiled at Sky Dancer and patted the seat beside him.
"Colleen was about to tell us some news." Scarlett smiled at the young woman.
Sky Dancer went to say something, but closed her mouth and took a seat next to Jeffrey Hauser, playing with her locket.
"Colly won a Shipwreck!" Rowan said excitedly, whirling around in her pink dress.
"She won a what?" Sky Dancer looked at the little girl curiously.
"No, it was a stop ship," Eryn corrected, causing the entire room to laugh.
"Colleen is the one who is going to stop Shipwreck!" Sky Dancer uttered in amazement, glancing around the room.
Rowan nodded. "Yeah, every week too!"
"All day." Eryn nodded seriously.
Cayden was trying really hard not to roar with laughter as everyone snickered.
Sky Dancer paled. "But how did Colleen find out so soon?" she queried.
Colleen giggled, glancing down at her friend. "Reena, my two sisters are talking about the scholarship that I won."
Sky Dancer squealed with joy, making Jeffrey Hauser cover his ears, while she flew off the couch and into her friend's arms. "That's the best news!"
"She's about to tell us something else too," Cayden reminded.
Sky Dancer let go of her friend, and sat down back on the couch. "What?"
Flint shook his head. "Don't know, but I'll be having pension until we really find out."
"Dad!" Colleen said in surprise.
"I think I grew three gray hairs with all this waiting." Scarlett giggled.
"Mom!" Colleen turned to her in surprise.
"Come on sis, out with it," Jeffrey said.
"What is it, Colleen?" Jaye asked.
"Well, you all know how I've been writing..." Colleen went to explain once again.
"YES!" they all shouted.
"Okay, okay, well... it's because of what I wrote that they offered me the scholarship." Colleen smiled, watching all of them in the room with her dark blue eyes, before announcing, "They want to publish it into a book."
Then entire room cheered.
"Oh, Bunny!!" Cayden said happily.
"Go Colly!" Sky Dancer cheered.
Scarlett rushed to her daughter and hugged her. "Now, that's great news!"
"What's the story about?" Rowan asked interested.
"I know there are dogs in it." Sky Dancer said toward the little girl.
"Damn it!" Flint shook his head. "I forgot to close Lady's crate! She's probably chewing the couch by now!"
Jaye's cell phone started ringing, she answered it, and started talking in it while everyone else continued listening to Colleen's news.
Scarlett glanced at her friend then at her daughter. "Can you finally tell us about what you've been writing for all these months?"
Colleen had a sparkle in her eye. "You," she announced with a mischievous grin on her face.
"Come again?" Scarlett asked, puzzled.
"I wrote about all of you, here on the base," Colleen explained, smiling.
Flint dropped his jaw. "You mean to tell me that you wrote all of the stories we used to tell you?"
Colleen nodded, continuing to smile, glancing at all of their surprised faces.
"I think I'm going to be ill," Duke groaned.
"Oh man, that's got to be a great book," Jeff said excitedly.
Cayden just laughed.
"Am I in da book Colly?" Eryn asked hugging her father tightly.
Colleen leaned her head on Cayden's shoulder. "I'm sorry munchkin, but not in this one. This was when our mothers and fathers weren't married yet. Jeff, Cayden, and even I am not in it." She felt lightheaded again, and waved it off. "But you may be in the second book. They already want a sequel."
Flint groaned. "Conrad, I'm going to be sick too."
"Cayden, give Daddy and Uncle Dash shots," Rowan said, walking over to Jeffrey and sitting on his lap.
Jeffrey cuddled with his baby sister.
Jaye hung up her cell phone, all the color had drained from her face.
"Dash," Duke said softly and nodded toward Jaye.
Flint handed Eryn to Duke and walked over to his wife, kneeling down. "Honey, what's wrong? Was that the doctor?" Petrified that the cancer had returned. His heart pounded, while taking his hand with hers, and placing his other on top of both of them.
Scarlett walked next to her husband, sending him a concern look.
"That was Dr. Who. You know Eryn's new doctor," Jaye said softly.
"Yeah Daddy, he wivs in Whoville," Eryn said from Duke's arms.
"What is it, Mom?" Cayden asked.
Scarlett gently asked, "I thought you only took her for a physical." Recalling when the both of them had taken the girls to the new pediatrician, while touching Eryn's back gently.
"Allie, what did the doctor say?" Flint asked calmly, ignoring the tightness in his stomach.
"She...she's got a growth disorder. A form of dwarfism," Jaye answered. "They found it in her bloodwork."
"Wike Snow White?" Eryn asked.
Cayden went over and stood behind his mother.
Everyone stared at Eryn, then back at Jaye.
Flint lowered his head, then looked at his wife's eyes. "I know the news is not what we both wanted, but this happened for a reason. Our little girl will be fine, she's healthy and happy and that is all that matters."
"He says we'll have to watch her really carefully for ear infections and sinus infections but most of all kidney infections," Jaye said and hugged her husband.
"What's my dwarf name gonna be, Mommy." Eryn asked.
"How about Dorky." Cayden said with a smirk.
"Cayden!" Colleen and Flint scolded.
"How about Playful?" Jaye asked her little girl.
Rowan observed the adults and her best friend. Then whispered into her brother's ear. "How about Speedy?"
"Hey, that's a good one, Rosey," Jeff said to the little girl, then towards the others. "Rowan said how about Speedy."
"That seems to fit her," Duke said cuddling his Goddaughter.
"She does run fast," Cayden added.
"What do you think, Daddy?" Jaye asked Flint.
"Well, it will match my Hundred Yard Dash!" Flint chuckled, kissing his wife.
Rowan smiled at everyone.
Sky Dancer stood up, "Umm... Duke I need to tell you something."
Scarlett titled her head toward the young woman. From the pilot's expression, she knew something was up. She glanced at her husband, then back to Sky Dancer.
"What is it, Sky Dancer?" Duke asked, turning toward his son's love.
"From what you were talking before I thought you already knew, but I don't think you do, sir," Sky Dancer said. "I rushed to get you immediately."
Everyone exchanged curious looks, something indeed was up.
"What's wrong?" Scarlett inquired gently.
Sky Dancer took a deep breath. "Shipwreck and Anchors made the Mess Hall into a surfing contest. They flooded the entire room, and are surfing on Roadblock's large cookie baking sheets."
Flint smacked his forehead.
Duke handed Eryn to Scarlett. "I'm going to kill them." He rushed out of the suite.
"They'll never change," Jaye said looking at her husband. She smiled but still looked worried.
Flint shook his head. "I'll go give him some back up." He stood up, kissed Jaye gently, then rubbed his daughter's head before leaving the suite.
"Umm, I should had mentioned that they were also surfing with nothing on," Sky Dancer added embarrassed, biting her lower lip.
Scarlett glanced at the ceiling and shook her head.
"Reena, you should go take a picture of their faces when they find out," Jaye chuckled.
"Can I go see?" Eryn asked, squirming a bit.
"No," Scarlett answered her, "And neither is Rosey."
Sky Dancer smiled. "Alright, Lady Jaye. Come on, Hauser, I'm not going down alone."
Colleen giggled, sitting down in one of the chairs.
"But Wreck keeps tewlen all the girls he has a cute butt," Eryn said.
"Yeah, twenty years ago." Scarlett smirked, recalling the time when Shipwreck had dressed into the Valentine Cupid and she had found him along with Duke, hung from a tree.
"Mom!" Colleen said in shock, turning green.
Sky Dancer laughed, "Jeff, hurry, grab your camera and let's go!"
"Alright, alright, I'm going." Jeff grabbed his camera. "Don't be so pushy." He teased then ran out the door.
"You alright, Colleen?" Cayden asked becoming worried. "Did you eat to many gummy bears again?"
"Pushy! I'll show you pushy!" Sky Dancer replied evenly, running out of the suite. "Get back here you yellow bellied sap sucker!"
"You ate gummy bears again?" Scarlett asked, putting down Eryn. "And you didn't eat anything nutritious?"
Colleen gulped standing up, "Reena, wait for me." She turned, heading for the doorway, walking after her best friend.
Jaye wheeled her chair in the way. "You're not leaving here, Colleen."
"Can I have gummy bears?" Eryn asked.
Colleen sighed and turned around, sitting back down in the chair, her hand touching her chin and blew the loose strawberry-blond lock away from her face.
Rowan glanced at her mother. "Can I have the red ones? Please?"
Scarlett shook her head. "Sorry girls, but all three of you are going to have pasta and meatballs." Then she smiled. "But after lunch, you can have gummy bears."
Rowan jumped off the couch. "Okay! I'm hungry!"
Cayden knelt down in front of Colleen. "You alright, Bunny?"
"I'm fine," Colleen assured him, "Just got sick to my stomach thinking on Shipwreck's rear."
"Allie, want to make that famous salad of yours?" Scarlett grinned, knowing how much Jaye enjoyed cooking.
"You actually want me to make something to eat?" Jaye asked astonished.
"Aunt Shana, you know Mommy can't cook," Eryn said, giving Scarlett a Jaye type look.
Rowan looked around. "Was this like the time where Aunt Allie made that rice and it stuck to the wall?"
Scarlett shook her head. "Rosey, you are no counterintelligence agent."
Colleen stood up from the couch, and took a step.
"And where do you think you're going?" Scarlett frowned, tapping her finger on her arm.
"Bathroom," Colleen answered. "I'll wash and come and eat, alright?"
Cayden watched his wife head into the bathroom and sighed.
"What's eating you, Cayden?" Jaye asked worried for her oldest child.
"She hasn't eaten anything but gummy bears, lots and lots of gummy bears for the past few days," Cayden answered.
"Lucky, Colly," Eryn grumbled. "She eats gummy bears and I get stuck eating icky meatsyballs."
"I like meatballs. But I love meatloaf better," Rowan pointed out. "You think we can make a gummy loaf?"
Scarlett glanced at her son-in-law. "Now, I'm getting worried about her. She looks thinner, then she used to be. Cayden, how was her appetite during your trip?"
"She ate some, more than she is now. But she ate a lot of gummy bears there too," Cayden said in worry. "Has she ever done this before?"
"She didn't start eating this much candy until several months ago," Scarlett replied, her frown deepening.
"It's my fault, Mum," Rowan admitting softly, rushing to her mother and hugging her tightly. "I saw the gummy bag and I pointed them out to her."
"Rosey, its not your fault," Scarlett said gently, stroking the little girl's hair.
"Shana, you think she might have some kind of eating disorder?" Jaye whispered to her best friend.
Scarlett's face paled, and she went to reply, when the door burst open and Jeffrey with Sky Dancer rushed into the room, panting heavily. "What in the world?" she asked, astonished.
"We're dead!" Sky Dancer said in between breaths. "Flint threatened us with Pig P.T."
"I'll be sure to record it," Jaye said with a smirk.
"Why thay give you piglet P.T.?" Eryn asked.
"For the picture we took, Pig P.T. everyday until I retire." Sky Dancer replied, glancing toward the door. "You should had see their faces when Shipwreck and Anchors burst out of the Mess, water and all, wearing nothing at all!"
"Let me see," Jaye said chuckling.
Jeffrey brought over his digital camera and showed her.
Scarlett giggled, leaning over. "Conrad's face is red as a tomato, but Dash's looks like—"
"A Cherry." Flint finished her words, walking in the suite, with Duke right behind him.
Sky Dancer gulped, and hid behind Jeffrey.
In the background of the two in high command was a naked Shipwreck.
"He has absolutely no reason to be bragging," Jaye said as she pointed him out to Scarlett.
"Yeah, I agree, but Anchor's is really cute!" Scarlett pointed out, ignoring her husband's features.
"Give me that camera," Duke said, snatching it. "I'm going to flush it down the toilet."
"Dad!!" Jeff exclaimed.
"You can't, Colleen's still in there. Speaking of that, she's been in there for quite a while. I'll go check on her," Jaye said, starting to wheel herself toward the bathroom.
Sky Dancer rushed away from her CO's flaming expression. "I'll go check on her." Starting to head out of the room.
"Alright, Conrad, give Jeff his camera back. You can punish all of them later. Right now, set the table, before I use my meatballs as target practice!" Scarlett said seriously.
"Alright, alright." Duke grumbled handing Jeffrey back his camera.
Scarlett shook her head, then kissed him on the cheek, before heading into the kitchen, pushing Jaye and two little shadows following them.
Flint glanced around. "Might as well set the table, otherwise I'll have a lot of arrows somewhere I don't want any!" He chuckled.
Sky Dancer gave a half smile, then headed toward the bathroom. She gently knocked on the door. "Colly?" she called through the door, but no answer came. "Colleen? Are you still in there?" she asked again, slightly louder.
Still not receiving any answer, she backtracked to the bedroom, but didn't notice her best friend in her old room. She slightly frowned, becoming more concerned, and headed back to the bathroom's door. Grabbing hold of the knob, she slowly turned it and opened the door, swinging it open. The door stopped midway, getting stuck on something.
"Colleen?" Sky Dancer poked her head through the opening, peeking inside. "It's only m—-" Her face paled instantly, spotting the reason why the door jammed, from one Colleen Hauser.
Colleen's hair spread wildly around her, covering most of her dark pink shirt, and jeans. Her face buried by the locks, drowning her beautiful features from it.
"Colly!" Sky Dancer cried out, carefully stepped into the bathroom, kneeling down next to her friend. "CAYDEN!" she screamed at the top of her lungs, her voice filled with fear, pushing away the stray hair, from her friend's face. "CAYDEN!"
Cayden heard Sky Dancer's fear filled scream, sprang off the couch and ran for the bathroom before anyone else could register it. He rushed into the bathroom. "Colleen!!" he cried out urgently as he forced his way in. He noticed that Colleen had gotten sick in the toilet. He bent down to check on her. "I'm taking her to the Infirmary," he said to Sky Dancer, gathering her in his arms, and rushing out of the now fully opened door, while carrying his still unconscious wife.
Duke noticed this. "What's going on!!" he demanded, putting the stack of plates down on the table as Cayden rushed for the front door.
Sky Dancer rushed into the room. "I found her collapsed on the floor in the bathroom," she said, her voice still with fear.
"Conrad? What's all the yelling?" Scarlett came out of the kitchen, wearing a white apron and holding a wooden spoon, with Jaye, Rowan and Eryn following her out.
"Something's wrong with Colleen," Duke said taking off, running out the door Jeffrey following right behind him.
"Go, Shana. We'll take the girls and be right there." Jaye said gently.
Scarlett nodded, starting to shake, feeling numb. She felt Sky Dancer's gentle hand leading her out of the door, while they raced toward the Infirmary.
Joes had noticed the commotion and had stopped in their tracks. Worried faces from Sammy, to Spades from Alpine to Bazooka and even a naked Shipwreck surrounded them.
They rushed into the building, finding Cayden pacing back and forth in the hallway, his features in deep worry, while Duke and Jeffrey mimicked the newest member of the family.
"Where is she?" Sky Dancer asked in a small voice, while continuing to hold on to Scarlett.
"In the exam room. Doc won't let me in there," Cayden said with a growl.
Duke put his hand on Cayden's shoulder. "She'll be fine."
"Yeah, my sis is a fighter," Jeffrey said.
"Cayden, she's going to kill me for this, but this morning, she was having a headache. She told me not to mention it to you, so you wouldn't worry," Sky Dancer admitted quilty, helping sit Scarlett on the couch.
Scarlett glanced from her son-in-law to her husband to her son. "Jeff, have you been getting headaches too?"
"Yeah, little ones. Nothing major," Jeff answered, walking over and standing next to Sky Dancer.
"Why does she keep doing that?! She knows I hate it when she does that!" Cayden cried out.
"She takes after her Mother. She used to do that too," Duke said.
"Conrad, if I wasn't worried right now the way I am, I would had flipped you!" Scarlett replied to his statement.
Sky Dancer glanced at the redhead. "I'll get you a cup of coffee. Anyone else?" They shook their heads, declining the offer. She turned and headed for the offices.
The sound of a wheelchair came heard from behind them, and they all turned to see Flint, pushing Jaye with two little girls holding hands, following them.
"Any news?" Flint asked, his own face in concern.
"I'm going in there," Cayden said, turning around to go into the room.
"Cayden, Doc said you were to stay out here," Duke reminded the young man.
"Dash, go get him," Jaye urged.
"Danny, stop." Flint rushed over to his son and gently touched his shoulder. "Doc knows what he's doing. I know you want to barge in there and help, it's in your blood, but would you have another doctor in with you while you are examining his wife?"
Rowan walked over to Scarlett and cuddled close, leaning her head against the redhead's arm. She took her mother's hand in hers and held it gently.
Scarlett kissed her daughter's head, wrapping her arm around her, returning the soothing.
Sky Dancer returned from the office with a cup of coffee for Scarlett. "Here, Scarlett."
"Thank you," Scarlett replied softly, taking the offered cup.
Frustrated, Cayden started pacing again.
Jaye gave Flint a worried look.
"Cay Cay will you hold me?" Eryn asked, holding his arms up to him.
"Sure." Cayden picked her up and hugged her.
Flint walked over to his wife and patted her shoulder, then started pacing.
Scarlett held to Rowan, trying to calm her down, while the little girl looked scared, thinking she might lose another person from her world.
Sky Dancer walked up to Jeffrey and wrapped her arms around him, holding him tightly.
A few minutes later Doc came out and cleared his throat. "Cayden, will you come in here, please."
Cayden looked at Doc and worry but followed him into the room and the door was shut behind them.
"Frankly, I'm worried about her. She keeps asking for ice cubes," Doc told the young medic.
Colleen slowly stirred from the hospital bed, her eyes closed, facing toward them, while one of her arms lay over the covers, with a IV attached.
"She's been eating a lot of gummy bears lately. I can hardly get her to eat anything else," Cayden said while he looked at his wife.
Doc looked amazed, "Really, no ice cubes?"
"Unless you're talking about her stuffed penguin Ice Cube, then no."
"Penguin?" Doc looked confused. "I'm going to need a vacation." He glanced up at the ceiling then back at the other man. "I'm going to let you two alone, you have some things to talk about."
He patted the young Faireborn's shoulder, shook his head slowly, then left the room.
Cayden heard everyone's voice asking the Joe medic about Colleen all at once.
"I'm sorry, but my patient wants to talk to the other Joe me— Lady Jaye, get away from me with that wheelchair!!" Doc's voice shouted, while running feet echoed from the hallway and the sound of wheels came apparent after them.
Cayden walked over to the chair and sat down taking her hand in his. "Hey Bunny..."
"Hey, Caveman," Colleen softly whispered, slightly opening her eyes, glancing at his handsome features from his brown wavy hair, to his green eyes and strong chin. She slowly squeezed his hand.
"How are you feeling?" Cayden asked as he stroked her beautiful locks.
"Hungry," Colleen replied softly, searching in his eyes, knowing he wasn't pleased with her at the moment.
"No gummy bears." Cayden said sternly.
"But... but..." Colleen stuttered, looking down at their hands. "I want to eat those chewy Brutuses."
"You need to eat real food first, Colleen." Cayden said.
"Fine," Colleen exhaled defeated, her eyes turning softer and continued to stare down at their hands. "Are you angry with me?"
"I'm upset that you didn't tell me you had a headache this morning and that you didn't tell me you weren't feeling well," Cayden said.
Colleen slowly reached her other hand and rubbed gently his arm, her fingers delicately moving up and down his muscles. Her eyes glanced upwards to his face, seeing the hurt in his eyes from keeping the secret from him. She kicked herself silently, and did something for the first time in front of him, bursting into tears.
"Oh Bunny," Cayden said and pulled her against him and held her tightly. "Why are you crying?"
Her soft sobs filled the room, holding on to him, afraid to let go. "I'm sorry I made you worry," she softly said between the tears that trailed down her cheeks.
"Honey, just don't hide stuff from me," Cayden told her and kissed her head. "I'm your husband and I want to take care of you."
Colleen nodded. "Alright, I promise no more secrets." She gently took his left hand, touching the wedding ring with one of her fingers, playing it with it for a split moment, before wrapping her hand completely over his and slowly leading it above her stomach, pressing it lightly, while it moved from her breathing.
Cayden looked at her confused for a minute then his eyes widened in shock. "Really?"
Colleen looked into his eyes, and slowly nodded. "I begged Doc to let me tell you first." She rose her hand and touched his cheek. "Dr. Faireborn we are going to have a wee one in seven months."
Cayden let out a scream and pulled her tight against him.
"Can I have gummy bears now?" she teased, holding him tightly, tears slowly streaming down her cheeks.
"Oh, Bunny. You can have anything you want as long as you eat real food too." He looked into her eyes and then kissed her.
Their lips slowly parted and their faces remained an inch away, gazing into each other's eyes. "You got a deal, Faireborn," she softly said, wrapping her arms tighter around his neck and bringing him back towards her lips, pressing them together once again.
"Well Mommy, what do you say we go tell the others?" Cayden said happily.
Colleen unwrapped her arms suddenly, sending them falling down on his back. "No..." Her eyes widened. "Can't we keep it a secret for seven more months?"
"Honey, they're going to figure it out sooner or later. We need to tell them." He said, standing up from the chair.
"No!" Colleen cried out a little louder, more nervous, slightly shaking. "He's going to be angry. I know."
"Who? Your father? I don't think so." Cayden tried to reassure her, sitting back down.
"But... but..." Colleen stuttered. "What about…." she went to her deeper voice. "Nobody gets my baby pregnant. NOBODY!"
"That was before we were married and before he accepted me. Trust me, he'll be ecstatic."
"I hope so. I just don't want to disappoint him," Colleen said softly, her eyes downcast.
"Oh, Bunny. You've done nothing to disappoint him," Cayden told her lovingly.
Colleen smiled at him. "I love you, Cay," she said, kissing him gently.
Cayden put a hand on her stomach again. "And I love you and our baby more than anything."
"Or babies," Colleen murmured gently. "The O'Hara line carries triplets and twins, you know."
"You know that thought terrifies me," Cayden said. "You feel up to going out there?"
"Will Doc get angry if you unhook me from the IV?" Colleen asked wisely.
Suddenly, a flash of naked skin ran past the window, with a small green parrot flying above a pepper head. "Help me!"
"Get back here you naked Sailor!" Sammy ran passed the window and a minute later Spades passed quickly.
Colleen gulped. "Well, can I at least complain on the view?"
Cayden shook his head. "I will put the IV bag on a pole and we can go out that way."
She nodded, while he placed the bag on a pole and helped her get out of bed.
They walked to the door and kissed before opening it, leaving the room.
Colleen looked around, spotting everyone's eyes glance toward them at the sound of the door opening.
"Colleen..." Scarlett stood up from the couch and rushed to her daughter, wrapping her arms around her carefully, while tears streamed down her cheeks.
"I'm fine, Mom," Colleen softly mumbled in her mother's ear, holding her with one arm, tightly.
"Doc won't tell us what's going on," Jaye said.
Jeffrey just smiled. He could feel that his sister was happy, he just didn't know what about.
"Pumpkin," Duke said walking over toward her.
Flint looked at Cayden, waiting for an answer, but saw his son remained silent.
Colleen unwrapped her arm from her mother's embrace and then glanced at her father, tears once again starting to trail down her cheeks. "Daddy, please understand." She rested her head on his chest, holding him tightly with her arm.
"Oh, baby. How bad is it?" Duke asked thinking his child was dying.
Colleen glanced up at his worried features and kissed him on the cheek, before leaving his arms and walked back to her husband, taking his hand in hers. "I need to ask you all something."
Scarlett swallowed hard. "Anything Colleen."
"What... is it?" Sky Dancer asked timidly, holding onto Jeffrey, worried for her best friend.
"What?" Rowan and Eryn said at once.
"Ask away." Jaye said, taking Flint's hand.
"Out with it, Cole," Jeffrey urged.
"What is it, Pumpkin." Duke asked.
Flint stayed quiet, getting more nervous by the second, his heart filled with fear.
Colleen looked at Cayden, then at each of their faces before her own face turned to a large smile. "So, how fast can you all start knitting baby boots?"
Jaye started crying and looked up at her husband then back to her son. "Oh, Danny."
"What are you saying?" Duke asked not sure if he heard her right.
Jeffrey smiled at his sister and hugged Sky Dancer to him.
"What dat mean?" Eryn asked, confused.
"Something to do with boots." Rowan answered. "I think."
Scarlett stood there, momentary shocked from hearing what her daughter had just informed them. She took two steps and hugged her close. "Oh, Colleen, my baby!"
Flint cried out. "What...what...what..." he glanced down at his wife, then back at his son and his wife. "what...what... what..."
Sky Dancer leaned closer to Jeffrey, taking his hand in hers and holding it tightly.
Colleen smiled at her mother, then at her father. "I'm two months."
Duke took a step toward Cayden. "You got my baby pregnant?"
"Well, it took the both of us, Uncle Con," Cayden said.
Duke acted like he was going to kill Cayden at first then pulled him into a hug.
"What's pregnatadorated?" Eryn asked.
"I think it was pregnasonic," Rowan answered. "Like a dinosaur."
Colleen smiled at her father, then at her mother, at her in-laws and her brother with his girlfriend and lastly at her two sisters.
Flint finally found his feet and walked up to the couple, embracing them both. "I love you both." He then grinned at them. "And whatever you do, Do not, I repeat, Do not name the baby, Gaynor. Got it?"
"Ewww...why would we name the baby that?" Cayden asked, his face turning into disgust.
"Hey, it's a strong name," Jaye said.
"Mommy, can I have a baby too?" Eryn asked seriously.
Flint turned to his daughter. "You have babies, all the ones that Aunt Nancy sends you." He then walked over and picked her up. "Besides, when Colleen has the baby, you can help. We are going to need both you and Rowan."
Rown jumped off the couch and rushed to her sister, embracing her carefully around waist. "I can help tons."
Colleen giggled. "Alright, you and Eryn are in charge of gummy bears. Making sure I don't run out." She slowly leaned forward and kissed her sister's head.
Scarlett leaned against her husband, wrapping her arm around his waist. "Looks like the family album is going to have more pictures," she smiled up at him.
Jaye slowly got up from her wheelchair and walked over to her son and daughter-in-law and hugged them.
Eryn got really excited. "See, Daddy! I told you Brutus will make Mommy all better!!"
"You are so right, sweetheart," Flint said, smiling at his baby girl. "You are so right."
Colleen's eyes turned softer, letting new drops escape, trailing down. "Mom," she choked, hugging Jaye tightly.
"Group hug!!" Jeffrey called out and everyone came together and hugged.
Thank you for reading this chapter of the Saga. Now, the adventures continue with Bloodlines 2!! We hoped you enjoyed the storyline from its humor, to its sorrow and to its happy ending.
Brutus, who at the moment sitting on a bed, wearing Mickey Mouse ears and shirt waves Hello to you all.
Thank you once again for being part of our readers world!
Scarlett Slipper and Alison Hart Burnett.