There was a change, she could feel it. Things weren't happening like they usually were. The change was subtle, barely noticeable, but she picked up on it instantly. Like those who knew when the weather was going to turn, when their loved ones were in trouble, they just know. She could feel it when she flicked her wrist, the thread of electricity didn't work they it was supposed to. It was erratic, rather weak in its follow through.
For a moment Elle thought that maybe she just wasn't focusing, maybe it was because of nerves. Gabriel had been gone for days, leaving her alone in this horrible little house. Now that everyone believed her to be dead, he had to continue the charade. This meant she was left alone for long periods of times, hiding away from everyone who wished her harm. It was a long list.
Every sound made her nervous; she was jumping every time a dog down the street barked. She was normally so confident, completely in control. Elle had never coped well being alone. She had tried it before after her father died, and it didn't go well, she really didn't want to do it again. If she could control the power maybe she'd feel better about the solitude, but even after taking several deep calming breaths, it still fizzled out to little more than a spark erupting from her palm.
There was no way that she was sick. When she was younger she would still have complete control, even while sneezing. There was something else at work here, something stronger than her nerves. She was determined for it to work, she wasn't nervous; there was little explanation as to why it wasn't working.
Elle tried to remember what would happen at the Company when the agents lost control of their gifts. It wasn't something that happened all that often, with the scientists at work there were hardly any surprises. Once something went wrong they were generally out, never to be seen again. She didn't get attached to them, Elle rarely paid much attention to who came and went. It was obvious though that the women moved on more often than the men.
The electricity failed to move beyond her fingertips, an obvious lack of heat to it as her stomach plummeted. There was a minute possibility; Daddy had always told her to be prepared for anything. After that first time she was always prepared.
Her hand fell to her abdomen, smoothing over it Elle felt nothing. That didn't mean there wasn't something there, someone there.
With her heart racing, Elle grabbed the money that Gabriel had left on the bench and dashed out of the house. There was a shop on the corner that she frequented for the basics; behind the counter was a surly young woman, who did little but scowl at the customers. She ignored Elle when she entered, focusing intently on the latest dramas in her gossip magazine.
There were so many to choose from. Each offering something different, Elle took the one that ensured it was ninety nine percent effective. The girl raised an eyebrow as she took her money, wisely not saying a word. Electricity or not, she could still hurt her.
Once back in the house, she ripped open the box, its contents spilling over the floor. Taking the sticks and the instructions into the bathroom, Elle sat on the edge of the bath and read the steps. It was perfectly simple. Easy as peeing on the stick, then waiting for the colour to appear.
The minute passed slowly as she waited, she had thrown the stick into the sink after she was finished. She couldn't bear to hold it in her fingers. Her shaking hands would probably drop it. Her life had turned completely on its head in the last six months. What she once knew was no longer, her pre-determined path had been destroyed. Nothing was how it was supposed to be, most days that excited her. Standing in this too small bathroom, with a simple stick that would change her life forever – she didn't feel excited.
She was terrified. Growing up there had never been a parent in the traditional role, her father being far too important to have time for her. Her time had been spent with a nanny, then a tutor, before she had been left to her own devices. She didn't know how to be a mother. She had never even seen a baby before, let alone held one. There was so much that she didn't know, Elle barely managed to take care of her own needs most days, could she really care for another being? Someone that would rely on her for everything for a very long time.
Then there was Gabriel.
They hadn't even defined what exactly this was, he had promised to keep her away from his father, to keep her safe. She believed him when he told her he wanted her around, alive. A baby changed everything. Nothing would ever be the same again.
They would have a child, a little life that was there purely because they were. They would be a family, albeit a very dysfunctional family, but a family. There would be a father, a mother, and a baby.
Elle's hands stopped shaking as the hand crossed the twelve on her watch. Her heart had slowed from its rapid beat as she pulled the stick from the basin, taking a deep breath she turned it over. Her mouth fell open as she took in the blue. A lovely pretty blue.
She smiled as she tapped it against the sink, "A baby."