Well guys this is it. I am so sad that this story is over, but also happy that i actually finished it! Whoop!! Without further ado, I bring you the long awaited epilogue. Enjoy!
Christine finished singing to rapturous applause from the audience, who were crammed into the small bar. Over the past year she had become well known at the Piano Room and many people came just to hear her sing. The impact of this success made Christine feel elated for the most part, if a little overwhelmed. Only the other night she had been approached by a talent scout, who had tried to encourage her to join his record label, and become a professional singer. He had told her that she was far too good to remain singing in a bar forever. Christine had been flattered, but considering her present state, a singing career was not the best of moves. At three months pregnant she was still quite small, and able to sing without any difficulty, but she knew that soon she would barely be able to stand up, let alone sing. Erik had been worrying constantly about her pregnancy, and had been reluctant to let her continue singing at the bar at all. After a long discussion, she had been able to persuade him to let her continue at least up until she started to show. Now that was happening, she found that she would actually be grateful for the rest. She would never admit it but she was a lot more tired after her performances than she used to be, and she was looking forward to going to bed more and more each night.
Erik was waiting for her when she stepped down from the platform where she sung, and she went straight into his arms as she always did. They never seemed to be able to refrain from touching or kissing each other for very long. Christine could not believe how happy she was, and it was all down to the man beside her. The past year had been like a dream only she never woke up.
"You were amazing tonight, my love." He said as he kissed her soundly. "You look tired though. I think you need to go to bed and get some rest." He leaned back and looked at her, his green eyes gazing over her, looking concerned.
"Whatever you think, darling." She smiled as she leaned into him. He handed her a rose as they moved into her dressing room. It was a tradition of theirs that he would give her a rose after every performance, and he hadn't forgotten once.
"Thank you." She smiled, and kissed him, before grabbing her coat and bag and closing the door to the room.
People often wanted to talk to her after her performance, and usually Erik let them, even though he hated it. The men could be especially annoying, and he wanted to drag her away from them cave man style over his back. Usually he refrained from this, due to Christine's annoyance at such behaviour, but tonight he was having none of it. She really did look a lot more tired than normal tonight, and he wanted nothing more than to get her home and safely into bed. If he had his way, tonight would be her last performance until after she had the baby. He would talk with her later and make her see reason. She was so precious to him, and couldn't bare it if something were to happen to her.
When she had first told him she was pregnant his first reaction had been joy, followed swiftly by downright terror. He had no idea how to cope with a pregnant woman, and even less about coping with a child. Christine had assured him that she was fine, and that she was equally nervous about how to look after a child. Over the past few months they had both read what felt like every baby book on the planet in preparation, and Erik was feeling slightly better about the situation. The only worry he had now was that the child could look like him. He had spoken about his worries to Christine, and although she had insisted that it didn't matter to her and that she would love their Child no matter what he or she looked like it still troubled him. He knew that Christine was nothing like his own mother but would she be able to cope with a less than perfect child, and even if she could, the world could be a cruel place, especially to those it deemed as different.
All in all Christine was progressing well, and pregnancy definitely suited her. She had an inner glow about her that made her look even more beautiful than ever. As they walked out of the building towards the car he felt such an overwhelming surge of love for her that he had to stop her just so he could kiss her.
"I love you so much." He whispered as he released her lips, his eyes glowing with passion. His hand began to massage her slightly extended stomach under her thick coat. He could not get enough of her and the thought of his child growing inside of her was the most arousing thing he could imagine.
She smiled, her eyes slightly closed as she leaned in closer towards him, swaying slightly.
"Christine, you are shattered. You are going straight to bed when we get home." He said forcefully, as he helped her into the car.
"Only if you join me too." She said, grinning at him seductively as he sat next to her in the driving seat.
"I said you needed rest." He laughed at her expression of disgruntled disappointment.
"You know I can't sleep if you're not there." She said, her voice pleading and her lips pouting.
"We will both go to bed then." He gave her a quick kiss before setting off down the street.
"I talked to kamir earlier, and we both decided tonight was your last performance." He said after a few minutes. "You are officially on maternity leave now."
"It might have been nice to run that past me." Christine said grumpily.
"You said that you would stop when you started to show, and you have been showing for well over two weeks now."
She gave him a withering look, but didn't argue. If she was honest she was looking forward to not working and as much as she loved to sing, having her evenings free again would be wonderful.
As they drove toward home, Christine began to think over how much her life had changed over the past year. She was now happily married to the man of her dreams, and pregnant with their first child. She had always wanted to be a mother, and now that dream was coming true. Not only were her dreams finally coming to fruition, but those of the ones closest to her. After she and Erik had got back from their honeymoon in France, she had made contact with Meg, and after a long conversation she had decided to forgive her for what she had done. They were now better friends than ever, and Meg had made quite a success at her modelling career. Of course she was not with Alexia's agency, which strangely enough had gone bust within the past few months. Apparently she had many unpaid depts, which along with her glamorous lifestyle had been the cause of her bankruptcy. He hadn't said anything outright to her, but Christine suspected Erik may have had something to do with the destruction of her agency. Apparently she could now be found working behind the counter at a local clothes shop. The thought of how much she would hate this gigantic step down in er career made Christine feel satisfied. On a somewhat brighter note, Kamir and Gloria's relationship was still going strong, much to Christine's annoyance. Even if she hated to admit it, she hadn't seen her mother this happy in a very long time, and she only hoped it lasted and she didn't end up with a broken heart all over again.
When they arrived home Erik ushered her straight up the stairs saying he would join her in a few minutes. She wanted to protest but she really was very tired, and bed was starting to look very inviting.
She prepared for bed, and was under the covers when Erik came into the room. As he slid in next to her, she turned over and curled her body into his.
"I thought you'd be asleep by now." He said as he kissed her forehead.
"I was waiting for you." She murmured, as she attempted to burrow even closer to him. His warm body was wonderful at heating up the previously cold bed.
"Good night, my angel." He whispered as he wrapped his arm securely around her, his hand resting on her stomach.
"Night." Now that he was next to her she allowed the sleepiness that had been nagging her all day to finally overtake her, and she fell asleep in the arms of the man she loved.
Christine was curled up on the sofa, or at least as curled up as she could be seeing as she was almost nine months pregnant. Erik had gone into the kitchen a few minutes ago to make her current favourite meal of jalapeño peppers and chocolate ice cream. He found her constantly changing cravings both hilarious and disgusting. He would always make them for her never the less, and would still kiss her, even during the raw garlic phase, which thankfully had now finished.
Overall she had been progressing well with her pregnancy, and they had had no major problems. For the past month however, she was getting increasingly more uncomfortable, and now she wanted her pregnancy to be over, and for her child to be born. They had decided against finding out about the sex of the child, wanting to be surprised. After many arguments over names, they had decided that Christine would name it if it was a girl, and Erik would if it was a boy. Their child would therefore be either Callie or Andrew, and Christine and Erik were both happy with either names.
She was just about to ask him to bring the tomato ketchup with him when she felt something wet seep underneath her. Straight away she knew what it was, and she called urgently for Erik.
"Erik, it's started!"
"Alright, I'll be in in a second!" He called back, sounding completely unfazed. This reaction was not what she expected. Throughout her entire pregnancy he had been very over protective and concerned over every single aspect. She had expected that the news of her going into labour would have evoked a stronger reaction from him.
"Erik!" She called again, as she felt what must be the first of her contractions in her stomach. "Please, it's starting now!"
He appeared at the door, looking confused. "Christine, it's not on until seven."
"I'm not talking about the television!" She shouted. "I mean I'm in labour!"
Erik stared at her for around five seconds, before bounding towards her. "Oh my God! Are you alright? Are you about to give birth?" He looked positively crazed as he knelt beside her.
"Not yet. Erik you need to calm down. Do you remember all that the mid wife told us? I am fine for the moment, but we need to go to the hospital."
She tried to stand up, but Erik lifted her up himself and into his arms.
Christine couldn't help but giggle. "Erik, put me down, I weigh a ton. I can stand up on my own." He reluctantly placed her back on her feet.
"Erik, will you go and get the bag?"
He looked confused for a few seconds before appearing to come to his senses. "Right, the bag. Wait here!" He called as he raced up the stairs to get the bag with all Christine would need for the hospital. They had organised everything the previous week for when she went into labour and Erik had thought he would be able to cope with it perfectly well, but now that it was happening, he had no idea what to do.
When he located the bag, he raced down the stairs to find Christine pulling on her coat by the front door.
"Are you sure you are alright?" He asked, as he almost tripped over coming down the last of the steps.
"I'm fine." She giggled. "Good, you found it. Now are you sure you can drive? You look a bit stressed."
"Don't mind about me! How are you? Have you had any contractions yet?"
"Just the one." she smiled at his panicked expression. She was handling this situation a lot better than her husband was, and she dreaded to think how he was going to handle the final stages of her labour. She managed to usher him outside towards the car after assuring him once again that she could walk by herself. Once in the car she called the hospital to let them know that they were coming, and at last they set off.
Christine screamed in pain once more as another contraction ripped through her body. She had heard about child birth nonstop for the past nine months, but noting could have prepared for the agony of the reality of it. She honestly didn't know how she would have coped with it if Erik hadn't been there holding her hand the whole time.
"Come on Christine, breathe." He said as she squeezed his hand almost to breaking point. "You can do it my darling. Just one more push."
"I can't." She wailed tears and sweat pouring down her face. She was so tired and couldn't find the energy to make that last push that would bring their child into the world.
"Yes you can, Christine." Erik kissed her forehead, and rubbed her back, encouraging her. "It's almost over."
Erik could not bear seeing his wife in so much pain, and would have done anything to take it away onto himself. Right now she needed him to be strong for her, so he tried his best to remain calm all through her labour, even though all he wanted was to rage at someone and make her pain stop. This was something completely out of his power, and all he could do was comfort and encourage her as much as he could.
As Christine screwed up her eyes and pushed with every last ounce of strength she had left, she heard a piercing scream which was not her own, and at long last, after 14 hours of labour, their child was born.
"You have a boy." Said the midwife. "We will just get him cleaned up and then you can hold him." She moved over to the other side of the room.
Christine was so anxious to see her baby that she didn't notice the wary voice of the midwife or the exchanged looks from the nurses in the room. She craned her neck, trying to see him, but the mid wife's back was blocking her view.
Erik had seen the child straight away, and knew that all his fears over the past few months had come true. The deformity that plagued his own face also marred the face of his new born son. He felt dread seep into his veins as the baby was taken away to be cleaned and wrapped in a blanket. He knew instantly that he loved this child already and nothing would ever change that, but what would Christine think? She had accepted him, but only after weeks of not really seeing what he really looked like, and growing to love the real him as she always put it. Would she be able to accept that the child he had given her was not perfect either? What if she grew to hate him because their child was deformed like him? The thought was too much for him to bear, and he felt terror mixed with despair fill him inside.
"Where is my baby?" Christine cried. She wanted to see her child more than anything at that moment. Why were they taking so long? "Erik, will you get him for me?"
Erik felt lost in her pleading eyes, and longed to do what she asked, but the longer she didn't know the better in his opinion. He didn't want to see the horror in her eyes that he was so used to seeing from others when they looked at him. It would be so much worse coming from her and towards their child, who he already loved fiercely.
When the nurse brought the squealing infant towards Christine, she opened her arms eagerly towards her, and she took the bundle of blankets towards her and looked at her son for the first time. Her face instantly broke into a huge grin as she leaned forward to kiss his tiny forehead.
"Oh, Erik." She sighed, as she looked up at him, her eyes shining with unshed tears. "Isn't he the most beautiful baby you have ever seen in your entire life?"
As Erik looked at his beautiful wife holding their child in his arms, he felt all his fears evaporate instantly. "Yes, he is." He said as he leaned in to kiss her lips. "He's perfect."
I want to thank everybody who has read this story and an extra special thankyou to all you reviewers. You make me happy to read my emails! Please do leave me more reviews (pretty please!), and if you haven't left a review before then please do now, seeing as it was the last chapter :).
I tried my best to tie up any loose strings in this, but if you think of anything I missed do tell me and I'll try to put it right. I do hope you enjoyed this story, and if you don't already know, I have a new story up called The phantom of Longford house. It is very different from this story, but still EC (as if I would ever do anything different!). Please do give it a look and let me know what you think. once again, thank you so much for reading (and reviewing!).