A/N: It's been forever, but I have excuses! Actually, one excuse: university. Insane class loads don't allow for much time, and when you're writing paper after paper, creative energy kind of goes out the window. Still, hope you enjoy this chapter!
The chemo quickly took its toll on the child. He slept frequently, rarely had the energy to leave his bed when awake and patches of his skin turned red and raw. Sebastian squirmed in pain constantly and Brennan could do nothing more than rub cream on the sores and sit holding her son's hand while he slept. The doctors had said that so far, however horrid the symptoms seemed to Brennan, they were fairly mild so far.
On this mild Tuesday evening, Brennan sat on the child's bed, reading him his favorite story. She had convinced Booth he needed to go back to work, but had refused to go back herself. Three years ago, someone had to force her out of the lab every day. Now, she couldn't imagine being there while her son lay alone in a hospital bed. Brennan rarely went home anymore, to the point where the hospital was becoming a second home. The nurses brought in a fold-out chair for her, and the only time Brennan went home was to shower and change once every day or two. Sebastian's doctor had assured Brennan it would inevitably get worse before it got better, but every cough, every retch, and every rash tore at Brennan. On this particular day, Brennan sat beside the toddler, waiting for Booth. The nurse who had taken her lab results was due to return with them today, and Brennan didn't want to hear the results without him.
Suddenly, Sebastian jolted in his bed. His hand flew to his mouth.
"Mama-" he choked out, and Brennan barely managed to find a bedpan and shove it under his mouth before Sebastian vomited. Brennan stroked his back and smoothed his hair back as he retched again and again, not missing the tears working his way down his cheeks. As soon as he finished, Brennan pulled the toddlers into her arms. Sebastian buried his face in her shoulder and sobbed, and Brennan's arms tightened around him.
Brennan jumped as she felt a hand on her back, but settled quickly as she heard Booth's reassuring voice.
"What happened, Bones?"
"He threw up," Brennan mumbled, her face buried in Sebastian's hair. With a sigh, Booth sat down beside his partner and pulled her to him, resting his chin in her shoulder. He felt her sigh heavily.
"We...we're going to get through this, right? All of us?" Brennan asked, her voice quavering so much that Booth barely recognized it.
"Oh honey..." Booth kissed his wife on the cheek gently. "Whatever happens to us, we will deal with together."
Brennan took a shuddering breath in. "How do you manage to make everything seem better?"
Booth smiled gently. "I'm the husband. That's my job."
After a long pause, Brennan reached one of her hands out and laced her fingers with Booth's, as he slowly rocked her and Sebastian back and forth.
As Nurse Latricia entered the room, there were lab results waiting to be shared in her hands. The parents would want to know right away of what the labs had showed. Such a nice couple, she thought. Them and their little boy. They don't deserve this load on them.
As she made her way through the doorway, her eyes fell upon Mr. Booth and Ms. Brennan. They were lying together in the little boy's bed, the child in her arms, slowly rocking. Ms. Brennan's head was tucked into Mr. Booth's shoulder, and little Sebastian was sleeping against his mother's chest. It was such a peaceful scene that she hated to disturb them. So for several moments, all she did was watch. Let them have their moment, she thought, before we put this on them too.
A soft knock at the door made Brennan start up from Booth's arms. The nurse, the one who had been so gentle to Sebastian and so kind to them, was standing at the doorway, file in hand. Brennan knew she couldn't read people as well as Booth could, but by the look on the nurse's face, she could tell Latricia had something important to say. She moved out of Booth's embrace just long enough to lay her little boy down on the covers, tucking them in around him to ensure he was warm. Keeping herself situated in Booth's arms, she turned to face the nurse, who smiled kindly at them.
"Hey, honey. I got some lab results for you."
Brennan tensed instinctively. "For Sebastian?"
"No, hon, these are yours."
Booth and Brennan traded a look. Lacing their hands again, they looked up into the nurse's kind face.
"We're listening," said Booth.
Latricia flipped open the folder. "According to these results….Ms. Brennan is about nine weeks pregnant."
The room lapsed into a silenced shock.
Booth and Brennan stared at each other. Moments passed without any words, until finally Booth broke the long silence.
"Something tells me you already know the answer to that, honey." She paused. "I know this is a load on top of all you have to deal with right now. I'm sorry about that, really. If either of you ever need anything…"
"Thank you." Brennan whispered. Latricia nodded, and with a reassuring pat on Brennan's shoulder, eased from the room.
As she left, Booth shifted so Brennan was facing him. He looked her over carefully, as if examining her for signs of change. After awhile, his gaze shifted to Brennan's pale face. He put a hand to her cheek gently.
"Whatcha thinkin', Bones?" he asked.
Brennan shifted her teary gaze to him.
"I don't know, Booth. This doesn't seem like a good time to have more children, don't you think?"
Booth shrugged. "Is any time a good time, Bones?"
He got no response. "Bones…you're not thinking of…"
"No!" Brennan said adamantly. "I just…I don't know if I can handle this baby and Sebastian too on my own."
Booth lifted her chin with two fingers. "I got news for you, Bones. You're not alone. You'll never be alone. You'll always have me."
His words earned him a watery smile, and Brennan shifted herself into her earlier position against him. Booth's hand came to rest on her stomach, and he smiled, imagining the future as his exhausted wife drifted to sleep against him. He imagined a time in the future with a new, bigger house, maybe a dog, school nearby, and most importantly, Bones and two happy, healthy children.
However, big obstacles stood in the way of this dream. So many that Booth had to wonder: would it ever be so?
A/N#2: So aside from the ending, pretty satisfied with this chapter. I also love the character of the nurse. I know many people who have spent long periods of time in the hospital, and their nurses have been invaluable to them, so I wanted to have a character like that.
Enjoy and please review!!