Disclaimer: I don't own them, nor would I want to, I'm happy just writing little stories to fill the spaces in the world created by Larry Hama and the other marvelous people that brought GI Joe into our lives.
Rating; PG... I guess I mean no smut at all some romance...
Snake Eyes knew something was wrong with Scarlett the moment he saw her when he came back to The Pit one week prior. Her usually luminous skin was pale, she had bags under her eyes and the bright smile she almost always graced him with upon his return was absent. When he had asked her what was going on, she laughed it off and said she hadn't been feeling well and that there was a stomach bug floating around. He had almost instantaneously removed a glove and placed his bare hand on her forehead and then her cheek, checking her temperature. She smirked and lovingly turned her face into his hand before playfully poking him in the chest.
"What are you going to do now, Grandma Ninja, make me chicken soup and order me some bed rest?" she said with her green eyes mischievous enough to convince him she wasn't feeling as terrible as she looked. He just smiled under his mask, grabbed his duffel bag and they walked to his quarters. She then told him both Clutch and Cover Girl had been ill with stomach flu so he paid it no mind and figured if it got worse she'd see Doc. Leave it to his exceedingly stubborn girlfriend to let it get this bad.
Currently, he found himself pacing a trench into the linoleum outside of the medical exam room. Doc had kicked him out saying something about stubborn patients and their equally stubborn ninja boyfriends. With every pass in front of the door he thought back through the last week trying to figure out what he'd missed, how he'd let her deteriorate so much so quickly. Scarlett would probably tell him he shouldn't be kicking himself so hard, but at the moment she was on an exam table and had no say in the matter of his self flagellation.
Sunday he'd returned from a recon mission, just the kind he liked too: in, out, no body count. They shared a meal that evening and she had called it a night earlier than usual. He wasn't bothered by it, her well being was more important than his need for a long night of cuddling, so he kissed her good night at her door and went on his way. Tuesday she was on the field doing PT and getting chewed out by Beach Head for a less than stellar performance. She had been a little slower on her run than her usual and Snake Eyes had hung back to keep pace with her (and to keep an eye on her) but nothing to really fuss over. She was still faster than the greenshirts and about half of the other Joes, she just didn't seem very happy about it that day. That afternoon they had planned to have lunch together but as soon as she got her plate, she had to run out to the latrine in a fit of heaving. The rest of her day was spent in her quarters sipping ginger tea (at Snake Eyes FIRM request) eating crackers and pickles, and reviewing paperwork on the incoming greenshirts she'd be training next week. Wednesday passed with no event he could call abnormal, though she still had little appetite and was looking frail in her workout. At dinner, he pushed her to eat but it seemed the scent of chicken and veggie stir fry turned her stomach. She ended up having some vegetable soup, some bread and strangely enough more pickles, but Snake eyes doubted she'd kept that down either. Thursday passed and Friday morning found him pressuring the redhead to see Doc, he was beginning to fear there was something else wrong.
*Scarlett, I'm worried about you. You haven't been eating properly and you look really weak. * he signed to her as they walked into to the gym for a midmorning sword sparring session.
"Snakes, thank you for you concern, Love, but I'm fine. I took some Pepto this morning, I haven't puked since. I'm sure this will pass in another day or two." Her eyes were bright and he had no reason to doubt her. She was a smart, though stubborn, woman and he figured if anyone knew her body better than he did, it'd be her. He sighed, his shoulders relaxing and his brows visibly unwinding from each other.
*Fine, but don't get mad at me when I put you over my shoulder and carry you to the Medical wing because you've passed out or something.* His eyes were intense under his mask and she knew he wasn't joking.
"OK, OK!" She relented, "I'll make an appointment to see Doc Monday morning even if I'm feeling better. Happy now, Daddy?" Her voice was pure saccharin sarcasm with that hint of a challenge which always found him wanting to do away with protocol and decency, pin her to a wall and make her really want to call him 'Daddy'. She knew how to work him up. After ten years and two engagements, Shana Mae "Scarlett" O'Hara knew her man's buttons and liked pushing them at the most inappropriate times. Sometimes he thought she was a sadist, at that very moment her hands were lightly traveling down his chest, her gaze slow and methodical over his frame and her voice a low purr.
*Why do you like torturing me?* the smile on his face showed through his mask. Her fingers found his belt loops and hooked themselves there possessively, "because if I didn't, who would? Storm Shadow maybe a cutie, but don't think he's your type......" and with that she let go and walked into the gym towards the mats to begin stretching. She knew he was watching and threw that little extra sway in her his benefit... or further torture. He smiled again and knew there was a promise of a nice evening later in that sway.
The sparring session went reasonably well, though Snake Eyes found himself taking it easy on her, well more than usual. Her speed wasn't there and her focus waned the further into their workout they got. After two hours, time was up, they put up their gear and went to lunch. Again she had barely touched her meal, poking at her chicken and rice, only eating the olives. This is just getting frustrating, Snake Eyes thought to himself, if I didn't know any better, from the way she's been feeling and then just eating pickles and olives, I'd think she was Pregn..... No, that's just not possible. He had shaken the idea from his head. Scarlett, his Scarlett, pregnant. He admitted to himself he'd thought about it before, her belly full and round with life, a tiny hand gripping his finger.... just a passing dream for them to share in a happier time... or an alternate universe. But they had both agreed it wasn't the wisest move in their profession, after a botched wedding and several near death experiences between the two, who could blame them for taking measures against pregnancy? She had been on birth control since the the first time they made love and had never experienced any difficulties. Snake Eyes pushed the thought away and finished his lunch. She's fine, just a stomach bug. Don't get carried away with thoughts of babies, he thought to himself as he continued to watch her push her food around the plate.
That afternoon they had a short PT session with Beach Head, though to most people Beach Head's version of short and sweet meant everything was expected to be twice as fast and thrice as grueling. They were to run the obstacle course with fully loaded packs and armed. It seemed like nothing for Snake Eyes, he sometimes wondered why he even had to participate in PT, his own strict training schedule was more than enough. But he enjoyed the time on the course with Scarlett, and most days hung back in the order of the run to watch her move. Even after all these years, he'd never get tired of watching her. The strength of two soldiers in her feminine frame, speed and agility any of the Arashikage Masters would be proud of in a pupil, and an effortless grace that made anything she did look like a dance. She was doing well despite her earlier fatigue and was almost done with the final leg of the course when she collapsed. Oh No, he thought as his feet automatically took him to her side. He took off her pack and noticed her blood pressure seemed very low. She was pale and unresponsive to his gentle shaking, behind him her head Beach Head call for a medic. Snake Eyes gathered her up and ran full speed to the medical bay.
The door to the exam room opened and Snake eyes stopped mid stride and closed the distance between he and Doc almost instantaneously. Doc didn't even flinch, after all these years, he was used to Snake Eyes' brooding, pacing and pouncing whenever Scarlett was his patient.
"You can come in n...." Doc managed to say as the commando pushed past him to the exam table.
Black gloved hands signed quickly and worriedly to both Doc and his beloved, *Are you OK? What's the diagnosis? What's in that IV? And why is there an Ultrasound Device in here?*
Doc Chuckled and Scarlett smiled, her color was coming back now and he was glad to see her awake and seemingly fine.
"Snake Eyes, I'm fine. I guess I overexerted myself and I was dehydrated, thus the IV. Though Doc hasn't told me why I've been so nauseated lately, since he says it's not stomach flu" she took his hand and they both looked at the doctor expectantly. Just then, the nurse came in with a file folder.
"The test results you asked for Doc," she handed him the folder and left the room, Doc closed the door behind her as he read the results. He turned and both Snake Eyes and Scarlett leaned forward,
"Before I start, Scarlett, I need to ask you if you consent to Snake Eyes being present while I give you this news," She nodded, to scared to talk.
"Well, my suspicion was correct..." he said with a smirk
"which was.....?" Scarlett said, sounding scared and annoyed all at once while Snake Eyes clenched a fist at his side, impatient for answers.
"I haven't given this diagnosis in years. Your nausea is totally expected in this situation and I imagine you're going to have to order a bigger box of ginger tea to drink for the next few weeks..."
"Doc, what are you telling me?" she said, the quivering her her voice so uncharacteristic of the usually confident redhead.
*what is it, Doc? I don't think I can take this kind of suspense any longer. * Snake eyes said, his posture shifting, muscles coiling under his shirt as the thought of shaking the doctor to get answers quicker flicked through his mind.
The older man's eyes shone in a knowing way, Doc was a caring man, always direct and forthright when it came to giving you the news, good or bad. He'd been there the day Snake Eyes lost his voice and his face, there to care for Scarlett when the Baroness put her in a coma. He was dependable and had pulled them out of more than just a few scrapes with a good natured smile and a sure hand. The twinkle in his eye was disturbing this time, it seemed they'd never seen him so happy to give a diagnosis and it was, frankly, terrifying.
"Well, Scarlett," he paused for effect, "you're pregnant. Congratulations!"
The ninja and his fiancée both looked stunned. The silence in the room was palpable.
Scarlett was the first to speak, while Snake Eyes seemed to need a few minutes to collect himself, His posture slack and his mind racing. I knew it. ohgodohgodohgod howarewegoigntoraiseababy.
"Doc, I've been on the pill since before I joined the army, how could this happen now?"
He chuckled, "well I think you know how part of this happened........" The glare she shot him could melt the paint off the side of a tank. "OK OK... well, It could be any number of things, but I think if we get an estimate of how far along you are we can figure it out." he said as he sat down on the stool and wheeled himself over to the side of the exam table where the Ultrasound was. Snake Eyes turned to Scarlett and with one hand removed his mask, his other tight in her grip. His expression had him looking at once in awe and terrified the two remaining scars on his reconstructed face stood out as the color seemed to drain from him. The doctor had never seen the man go so pale, even from blood loss. Doc prepared the device and had Scarlett scoot down to the end of the table, her feet in the stirrups for the vaginal ultrasound. A few anxious moments later and there it was on the screen, a little flutter in black and white. Snake Eyes' jaw went slack and Scarlett looked up at her lover with a look of joy and anxiety, her hand reaching up to touch his face. He looked down at her and smiled finally as Doc continued the ultrasound.
"There we go," said Doc, his free hand zooming the screen in to show a little blob with another flickering blob within. "I'd say you're about six weeks, maybe seven. Good strong heartbeat, looks like everything is where it's supposed to be."
The smile on Snake Eyes' face seemed a mile wide, somewhere within him a touch of masculine pride welled up, a lapse he rarely ever allowed but today, in that moment he relished it. I'm going to be a father! He bent down to Scarlett and kissed her on the forehead, cupping her face in his hands. The tears in her eyes didn't ruin the bright smile on her face, she now the sacred vessel that would bring their child into the world.
As Doc waited for the ultrasound to print the frame for his patient he explained to the two soon to be parents that they most likely conceived when Scarlett had been coming off a round of antibiotics. "You had been on a heavy antibiotic for that knife wound you got eight weeks ago. I take it you didn't really think about the drug interactions after your stitches came out." he said, looking at her over his glasses.
She blushed and smiled but then her smile faded as she thought of taking her pills. "Doc, could there be anything wrong with the baby? I've been taking my pills daily...."
"No, no, you are just fine, the nausea is most likely because your body was purging anything bad out. Most medical journals and research theorizes that morning sickness is a protective measure. So I imagine you'll be a lot better now that you know are won't be taking your pills. I do suggest you eat clean, healthy, maybe stick to blander foods until the morning sickness subsides. Don't hesitate to eat, that's part of why you fainted today, baby is taking all the best nutrients for itself."with that Doc handed them the print of their baby's first picture and then Snake Eyes rather unexpectedly hugged him.
*Thank you Doc. Thank you so much for this news. * he signed when he finally let the other man out of his grip.
"You're welcome, I'm happy to give you the good news. I'll leave you to get dressed, Scarlett, you are going to have to set up a meeting with Duke and Hawk, this isn't something I can keep from them. I will be removing you from active duty pretty soon." Doc's serious tone brought them back to earth a bit as the reality of the situation began to hit. Both of them were active, essential personnel for the team, and though they hadn't had any Cobra threats in a long time, it was a possibility that things could go south very quickly.
"Understood." she replied in her professional tone. Once he left the room, Snake Eyes gathered her in his arms and kissed her, deep and sweet, thankful for her gift to him. Her arms still around his neck once the kiss was over, he turned and put a hand to her belly. The gesture once again brought tears to her eyes, she smiled and said "I love you."
As he turned his face up to match her gaze she saw tears in his eyes too and he mouthed the words he desperately long to say, I love you too. *more than you know * he signed.
He helped her dress and they left the exam room and the medical wing hand in hand, ready to take on the world, all three of them.