Horatio Caine and his wife Calleigh Duquesne Caine have been married for fourteen years and have two daughters, Caroline and Victoria and two sons, Timothy and Raymond.
She and Horatio had lived through the four pregnancies of their children Caroline Alexx Calleigh in 1998, Timothy Kenwall Horatio in 2001, Raymond Ryan Frank in 2005 and Victoria Maxine Nathalia in 2009.
Caroline was 12 years old by now and was starting to become a real teenager. She was starting to act out against her parents but both Horatio and Calleigh were being strict with her. She was in seventh grade and had her first crush on a boy who is in eighth grade. Calleigh was worried as every mother would be but she was especially worried about Caroline because she had been born five weeks prematurely. She was very protective of all her children. Horatio always she was a small Calleigh.
Timothy was a nine year old who loved to play baseball and who loved mathematics more than anything else. He was in fourth grade and was starting to become really ambitious. He was a copy of Horatio. He loved spending time with his father and he enjoyed when his father played soccer or baseball with him in their back yard.
Raymond on the other side was rather a small copy of Raymond and like Horatio´s and Raymond´s father. He is a five year old bundle of energy he needs a lot of activity. He was in kindergarden and loved being able to play as much as he wanted.
Victoria was one year old by now and was going to the Daycare. She was a charming little princess who is loved by everyone, mostly by her siblings who love to play with her.
Calleigh was now a happy mother of four and a happy wife and a good CSI ballistic expert. She was now almost forty years old but her life had sometimes had been worse than it had should been and she had been through more than the most people should have to go through. As a teenager she had to endure the divorce battle her parents were fighting with every kind of hostility and custody battle. At the university and as a young police officer at the CSI under Horatio Caine she had to live with the fear that her then boyfriend Jake Berkeley who worked undercover would not come back to her and would leave her just like her father left each time when he was drunk.
It had taken Horatio Caine nearly two years, since Calleigh had started working for him in 1994, up to their wedding 1996 to ensure her that he would not leave her alone and that he would stay with her no matter what. During their marriage she had been threatened endless times. She had been threatened by an inmate in 2002, forced to clean up a crime scene in 2007, fought against her fear of ants in 2003, fought through Speedle´s death in 2004, through her smoke intoxication in 2008, was run of the road in 2006, was at Eric´s side when he had a bullet in his head in 2007, was hat her father´s side when he was under probable murder investigation in 2004. She had fought through her father´s alcohol addiction with Horatio and her father over the years. Calleigh had lived through hell when Horatio had faked his own death in 2008 and had only told Ryan about it. She was hurt but she could also understand him because they both knew how Rick Stetler was.
She had lived through cases that included pedophiles and children or who included abused women causing her to have nightmares. But there was a constant during the whole time and this constant was Horatio. He had proven to her that he would always be at her side and that he would never leave her no matter what.
Today was their 14th wedding anniversary and Horatio knew that Calleigh was definitely not in the mood and had never been to really celebrate it. She had never really liked to celebrate her birthday or her wedding anniversary. Those were the only things that Horatio had not been able to prove to her. Her parents were always fighting or drinking at their wedding anniversary and at her birthday she was mostly alone with one of her parents and rarely celebrated with both of them. Celebrations scared her and still gave her a feeling of being abandoned. Because of that Horatio had to be very careful when he wanted to celebrate something with her. She was open and happy when they celebrated Christmas with the kids or when they celebrated the children´s birthday´s but aside from that she only liked to celebrate things that did not include her as the main person.
Horatio knew that he had to be careful when he wanted to celebrate with her today. When he arrived at their house the kids were playing happily in the back yard and Calleigh was working in the kitchen watching them through the window. She knew the date they had very well and she knew that Horatio probably wanted to celebrate with her but she was not in the mood. When he walked into the kitchen Calleigh saw him right away and could read the careful question in his eyes. She just shook her head no and could read the disappointment in his eyes but she could also read the understanding in his eyes.
"I am sorry Horatio." He knew that she was trying but that she did not succeed against her fears. After she had said those words she returned to continue preparing dinner and was trying to block everything of, trying to ignore that Horatio was there, she was trying to close herself of. He would not let that happen. He walked up to her and turned her around so she was leaning against the kitchen countertop his hands on her waist. "You have nothing to be sorry about Calleigh." He saw the question lingering in her eyes. "We both know that you went through a trauma with your parents and I do not fault you for that so stop apologizing to me. I will not have that. Alright?" she looked at him and knew that he was honest. "Alright." He pulled her into his chest and let her rest against his chest trying to get her to relax again.
After a few minutes she slowly pulled back from his chest and smiled at him lightly. "Thank you." "You are welcome." He lightly kissed her temple and her nose and then her mouth. Now she was almost the normal Calleigh again who did not like to celebrate and was not the Calleigh anymore who was afraid that he would force her to celebrate. Horatio knew that it was over for today but that it would return next year. He would never pressure her but he would carefully try to get her to start getting comfortable with celebrating her days again. He hoped that some day she would be able to celebrate again soon.
Later that evening Calleigh had just turned off the light in their bedroom and was lying wrapped up in Horatio´s arms that were protecting her. Horatio had almost fallen asleep already when he suddenly heard her talk. "When I was about six or seven we went camping near the ocean and it was one of the best vacations I ever had as a child. All of us went camping, dad, mom and me. We were the happy family I had always wanted." She stopped and turned around and hid her face in his chest. Calleigh burrowed into his chest trying to prepare herself for the upcoming memories. Horatio decided to stay quiet and to allow her to tell her story. He tightened his hold on her and wrapped the blanket around her more trying to protect and shield her as good, as he could.
"Until I was eight years old we were a happy family but after that dad started to become an addict. We had good times and good trips, just he and me, but we never were a real family again after that. Since then I never had a birthday where my parents were not fighting over something, sometimes it was just my father being a few minutes late coming home from work. I hated my birthday and Christmases since then and I guess I never really recovered from that." He could feel her getting agitated and worked up over her childhood. He tried to soothe her by rubbing soothing circles on her back. A few minutes later he could feel his shirt getting damp and knew that her dam was breaking and she was allowing the pain to surface completely. He just held her as sobs wracked her body. When she started having coughing fits he sat up against the headboard with her in his lap. Since her smoke intoxication in 2008 she sometimes had problems breathing when she was agitated or scared. She had an inhaler for that.
Horatio held her securely in his lap while he reached for her inhaler on the night stand and gave it to her. She took it with a shaky hand while Horatio held her. After taking it she could feel her breathing start to become normal again. Calleigh leaned heavily against Horatio´s chest. "Horatio I guess I never recovered from the things that happened in my childhood." He kissed her head lightly and then put a hand under her chin willing her to look at him. "Calleigh, sweetheart you have a lot of bad memories from your childhood. Unfortunately you associate these memories with your birthday and with Christmas but that does not stop me from loving you. You will be able to celebrate these two days and our wedding day some day. Try to be patient." He kissed her lightly. "Sweetheart you look exhausted. I think we should try to get some sleep." She nodded and let Horatio lower them back on the mattress. She snuggled into Horatio still hiding her face in his chest gathering strength from his warmth. Horatio wrapped secure arms around Calleigh and just held her as he stroked her back trying to calm her down enough to sleep.
A few minutes later he looked down and was relieved to see that Calleigh and finally fallen asleep and would get some of the rest she so desperately needed. He promised himself and Calleigh that he would everything he could to help her and that he would help her get rid of her fear.
Five years later Calleigh had slowly fought against her fear of celebrating and was at least able to celebrate her birthday, even if she was still not able to celebrate her wedding anniversary. For Horatio it was good enough for now that she was able to celebrate her birthday after 19 joint years, and after not having celebrated her birthday for thirty-seven years since the last birthday she had celebrated with both her parents had been her eighth.