Maybe he'd done something really horrible in a past life, maybe he was just born with a curse over his head. But damn, it just...wasn't fair. It really, really wasn't.
And he knew he should have argued to stay with Claire when she was giving birth. Now look.
Their bloodstained bed sheets were crumpled into the corner of the house and Claire was sobbing hysterically into his jacket, her face was sweaty and her hair was matted this way and that. Her clear blue eyes were puffy and red rimmed but he could barely find it within himself to console her, he was trying too hard to fight back his own tears.
He'd never thought to prepare himself for a stillbirth.
Tim had offered his condolences of course, but...to Gray it had just sounded so damn fake. He'd managed a curt, silent nod as the doctor and his tearful nurse shuffled out of the house. Claire had simply sobbed as she pushed the still body of their baby into Elli's arms, they'd promised to bring it to the church and that a funeral ceremony would be held tomorrow.
Frankly, Gray didn't even think he was ready for a funeral ceremony. Claire's fingers dug deeper into his jacket and he felt his tears spilling over his eyes, why the hell did things just have to be so wrong in this fucking world.
"I'm not going." Claire whispered to him that night. He sat up in from bed and looked down at her, she appeared emotionless.
"You're not going...to what?"
"That funeral - Gray how can I?" Her voice cracked and tears began welling up in her eyes again; he watched as they slowly slid down her face. "Gray...that was my baby, oh Goddess, that was my baby..."
The sobs shook her body and he found himself at a loss. He didn't know what to say, telling her to go to the funeral would shatter her but telling her not to go...well he'd hate to think of what people in town would say.
"...my baby...my baby..." her choked speech was killing him, it really was. Drawing her hunched over form into an embrace he hushed her until her sobs and murmurs were hiccups and whispers.
"Don't cry anymore, everything will be alright. I promise."
But he knew he was horrible at keeping promises and the words he'd spoken were hollow, because he didn't know if everything was going to be alright or not.
They awoke next morning and he was surprised to see Claire slide on her shoes with half-lidded eyes before he'd even changed. She was still in her nightgown, which resembled a camosille more than anything, and her ratty running shoes looked silly on her skinny exposed ankles.
"You're going out like that?" he asked, but she was already unlocking the door. He sighed heavily and grabbed a spare jacket, sliding it over her bare shoulders as he walked next to her. Without a single word to each other they walked slowly to the church at six in the morning, the fall air was crisp and the sun was just peeking out from the rooftops. Gray felt a pang of misery, today would be beautiful and it wasn't fair that he and Claire had to spend it mourning for a dead child. He fought back tears as they reached the doors of the church.
Rousing Carter from his slumber they held a funeral with just the three of them. That pastor had spoke softly and offered his apologies for their tragedy after they'd buried the little bundle. Gray had half expected Claire to jump into the grave after her baby but she stayed silent and stoic the whole ceremony.
Now it was just the two of them outside in the crisp autumn morning, Gray glanced at the blonde woman beside him and noted more tears dripping from her face. He held her hand silently, because that was the only way he knew how to be helpful to her. He was a silent pillar of strength for her to lean against.
And she leaned; she leaned for a very long time.
About a year and a half later the blonde woman he'd seen that day had finally receded back into the crazy, stupid, cheerful Claire he'd hated but had grown to love.
She'd become a prosperous farmer and he a (finally) professional blacksmith, and when one morning he noticed a rather large cardboard box that read First Response sitting on their kitchen table he was rather surprised to have a familiar little stick flung at him by his very happy wife.
He looked down at it as she hugged him tightly, blonde hair tickling his nose, and he made out through the flurry of hugs and laughter a little oval with two red lines through it.
"What is this?" he'd asked, just for fun.
She kissed his cheek and answered with a giggle, "This means I'm pregnant."
OK, wow it's about 2:00 am right now but I couldn't stop writing because...I really liked where I was going with this. LOL Hopefully you people reading this right now uhh kind of liked it too? I thought it was different from the other stories being written...LOL maybe this kind of different isn't such a good thing, but yeah D:
Anyhow, yes this is completely how I planned the ending to be from day 1! Now I'm not quite sure how stillbirth works but I did a bit of research so...yeah if I messed something up I'm sorry but you know I don't really care just don't review me saying it's messed up shit and this and that. You have a complaint about it please PM me or something.
Other than that, it's been a bumpy rollercoaster of inspiration and writers block but what do you know! My first long-fic, complete. Thanks to ya'll who've stuck around for this craziness, hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.
And yes, I'm apologizing for the shortness of this last chapter but I didn't want it to like, drone on, you know? Anyway, R&R as always, peace!