A/N: I don't technically have a beta, so any spelling or grammar mistakes are my own. I do, however, have the wonderful Bevfank (from Livejournal) who has graciously given me feedback and suggestions and let me bounce ideas off of her in addition to suggesting the title for this story. Huge thank you to her!
She was suspicious the first couple times it happened, but it was the third time – the third time that a wave of nausea overtook her and sent her scurrying off to make an impromptu offering to the porcelain god – that she knew. And the realization caused a sinking feeling in her stomach that had absolutely nothing to do with the nausea she had just experienced.
For years Gillian had been jealous of people with families, with children; with the wonderful gift that she thought she could never have. It was ironic, almost funny really, that now that she held a positive test in her hand – something that she had only ever dreamed of – she wasn't sure whether she wanted to laugh or cry. Her hands were quivering as she washed them and by the time she returned to her bedroom the shaking had spread, her entire body now vibrating with a choked half-laugh half-cry.
And that was how he found her, sitting on the bed with tears streaming down her face, wracked with sobs that sent violent tremors throughout her entire body. Wordlessly, he pulled her into his arms, pressing her damp face into his shirt, anchoring her and trying to absorb some of the spasms from her body.
"What is it, luv?" He asked after the shaking had subsided into a light trembling and the sobs had dissipated into nothing more than shaky breathing.
"I-I…" she started, taking a hiccupping breath against his shirt, unsure if she could get herself to form the words. "I'm pregnant, Cal."
Cal's brow furrowed in confusion as he pulled away from her, one hand under her chin to raise her gaze to his.
"I don't understand; you've always wanted children. This should be brilliant news," carefully, he wiped some of the wetness from her cheek with his thumb, "So why the tears?"
Automatically, Cal found himself analyzing and naming each of the expressions that passed across her face. Sadness. Fear. Shame. Regret.
"The baby…" she paused, trying to find a better way to say what she had to say, "It might not be yours. It might be Alec's."
"A-Alec's?!" The thought of Gillian carrying that man's child after all he put her thought sickened and infuriated him at the same time. "When did you…?!"
"Just a few days before we got together."
It made sense. In hindsight, he remembered that she had seemed… off for a few days, but he hadn't asked, and she hadn't said anything. Until now.
He wanted to be mad. He wanted to be mad at her. He wanted to blame her, to yell and throw insults and generally react and even over-react in any way he could but the emotions on her face told him not to. From what he could see she already felt absolutely miserable about sleeping with her ex-husband. And given his past… relationship with Zoë, he really didn't have any place being upset with her.
"He showed up at my door one night," she continued, "He said he wanted to apologize and to talk. He seemed sincere, so I let him in and…"
"And you slept with him," Cal finished. She looked down. Shame. "Hey, there's no shame in that, luv. God only knows I've done the same with Zoë more times than I care to admit." He laughed humorlessly.
"But it was different with you and Zoë, you…" She trailed off, abandoning her sentence. "This was different. I- we had sex, but I didn't want to, Cal. I didn't…" she bit her lip again and squeezed her eyes shut, tears trickling down her face once again.
To Cal, those words were a simultaneous slap in the face and punch to the gut that nearly knocked the wind out of him.
"You're saying that he forced you? That he raped you?!" Once the word was out of his mouth it seemed to act as a trigger, changing his disbelief and shock into hardened rage and disgust. He was so upset that he barely even registered his hand curling into a tight fist. "Bastard! That bloody son of a bitch! I'll –"
"No! Cal," she grabbed one of his hands, forcing his attention back onto her, "it wasn't rape. Alec did not rape me."
"What are you talking about?" his accent was thicker with his lingering anger, "He had sex with you, but you didn't want to; that sounds like rape to me."
"It wasn't," she assured him, "He didn't force me and he didn't hurt me. I – That night I'd had a few drinks with you before going home."
"Yeah, I remember that." They had both shared a few glasses of scotch after a case before they left the office for the evening.
"And when Alec showed up I had a few more because… I had a feeling that even though he was coming to apologize, it wasn't a conversation that I was particularly eager to have. Anyways, we talked for a while and then he… kissed me. I told him that we shouldn't, that it was a bad idea and I didn't really… want to, but he kept going and eventually I…" Her hand went to her forehead and her eyes to the floor: shame again. But only for a moment. "Afterwards, we both agreed that it would never happen again and he left. It was a mistake, Cal."
Gillian's explanation of the event eased most of his rage, but not all of it. "He never should have kissed you."
"I know, but that's actually not what I'm really worried about," she sighed, "Regardless of whose baby it is, I want to raise this child, Cal. I want that more than almost anything else I've ever wanted in my life. And I'm so scared that I'm not going to get a chance to do that. You know my past; you know that I've never been able to get pregnant before. I'm so scared that I'm going to lose this baby, Cal." She bit her lip, fighting futilely against the tears that were forming fiery pinpricks behind her eyes.
For a long moment there was nothing but silence. Cal watched her expression; it seemed stuck on the same mixture of fear and sadness, like a car stuck in neutral. He nearly opened his mouth to speak, but stopped when realized that he had absolutely nothing to say that would make her feel any better; he knew that she was right. Neither of them were experts on the subject, but they both knew that Gillian's chance of miscarrying were probably very high. Finally, from the deep recesses of his mind, he managed to come up with something.
"Tell you what, luv; why don't you make an appointment with your doctor and see what they have to say. Until then, let's try to think positive thoughts, yeah?" He suggested, having decided that a wait-and-see approach was probably their best option.
"I'll try," she wiped at her eyes and managed a smile, "Besides, worrying won't help anything."
"Right you are," he patted her knee and stood up, "What do you say we get some dinner and call it a night, eh?"
"Alright. Sounds like a plan. But I get to pick out the dessert," she said, and he grinned, glad that she was starting to cheer up.