A/N:

One day, in the magical world of gchat, makesmyheadspin said to me, "Imagine what NerdStud would do if Sookie and Jack were in a car accident." A sentence planted a seed, and my brain lit a lightbulb. There were threats of shanking and shunning from ARedheadThing, neither of which were followed through... But still, the lightbulb grew brighter and brighter, and the angst spot on my heart got bigger and bigger. And out popped this story. It's angsty, it's sweet, it's sexy near the end. And cute, because toddlers are cute :)


In Which NerdStud Nearly Loses Everything

I had just tried to call Sookie's cell for the fifth time with no answer, and was officially freaking out. She had taken Jackson with her when she went to the mall to pick up a present she'd ordered, and I needed a break. Since she was only picking something up, she offered to take him with her. He was just over one, and walking pretty good, so I thought it would be a good outing for them.

But then in a freak weather move, it started snowing. That was very rare for Savannah, and even though it would only be light, and not stick to the ground long, it would still make everyone drive stupidly. People would rush out to buy winter supplies, people who didn't know how to drive in it. Sookie could drive in snow, and I wasn't worried about her, but it scared me that she'd be out there with all those stupid people.

Just as I was about to call her cell again, the house phone rang. I ran to it and answered in a harsh tone.

"Mr. Eric Northman?"

"This is he," I said.

"Mr. Northman, this is Betty from the Memorial University Medical Center. We need you to come to the emergency room. Your wife was brought by ambulance after a car accident, and she's been taken for emergency surgery. You are her emergency contact, and there was a minor child also brought in."

I could hear my heartbeat in my ears, my breathing was shallow, I broke out in a sweat, and all logic flew out of my brain. Car accident. Sookie was having an emergency surgery. Jackson was brought in, too. My one year old son and wife were in a car accident.

"The child, that's my son. Is he okay?" I asked.

"He was not admitted," she said, which meant he wasn't injured.

My mind raced, but I thanked the woman and hung up the phone. I frantically searched for my shoes, suddenly unable to remember where we kept them. The same thing happened when I was looking for the keys, until I remembered we left them in the vehicles when we parked in the garage. Only then did I realize I had no way of getting there. We had two vehicles, but mine was in the shop waiting on a replacement part. Sookie had been driving the other.

I threw on my coat and ran out the door and down the block to Amelia and Tray's house. Tray was outside with Laura, showing her the snow, so I tried to calm myself so as not to scare her.

"What's wrong?" Tray asked as soon as I was close.

"Sookie and Jackson were in a car accident. She's having emergency surgery and I don't have a vehicle."

"Get in my truck, I'll be right there," he said as he picked up Laura and headed inside.

A minute later Tray came running out of the house and got in the truck. He wordlessly started the engine and pulled onto the street.

"Amelia's going to see if the sitter can come over, then she'll come too," he said, and I nodded.

Tray was silent the rest of the way. He didn't ask if I was okay because he knew he wouldn't be if the situation were reversed. He pulled up to the emergency entrance so I could run in, and then went to park. I found the nurse's station and frantically asked for information about Sookie Northman and the child that was brought in with her.

"Mrs. Northman is still in surgery for internal bleeding due to a lacerated liver," the nurse said, looking over a chart. "And the child is fine. He was mostly shaken up, though he might have some light bruising from the straps in the car seat."

"Where is he?"

"Follow me please," she said, and led me down a hall to an area with a lot of curtains, some closed, some open. We got to the last one, and she pulled it back to let me in. Jackson was sitting on the lap of a woman, and he looked confused, and scared. He looked like he'd been crying. The woman saw me and stood up.

"Are you Mr. Northman?" she asked.

Jackson finally spotted me and immediately started squirming in her arms and crying, "Daddy!" I rushed over and took him from her. He wrapped his little arms around me as best he could and buried his face in my neck.

"I suppose that answers that," the woman smiled.

"Is he okay?" I asked her as I rubbed his back and rocked him side to side.

"He's fine, just scared. It would probably be best to keep him close tonight."

"Thank you…"

"Meg," she supplied. "And it's no problem. You're free to take him with you to the waiting area, he wasn't admitted."

When I got back to the nurses station I asked if there was any information on my wife's surgery, and an intern was sent off for an update. Jackson was still clinging to me, and when I tried to pry him off so I could look at him he clung harder.

"It's okay, Jack," I whispered in his ear. "Daddy's here."

He finally pulled his head away to look at me and said, "Mommy."

His eyes were starting to glisten, and I knew mine were too. I didn't know what to say to him. He was only one, what could I say that would make him understand?

"Eric!" I heard Tray say, and saw him and Amelia both rush up to me. "Have they told you anything?"

"No. Jack's fine, but Sookie's still in surgery for internal bleeding or something. They sent someone to get an update, but that's all I know."

"Mr. Northman?" asked a voice from behind me. I turned around to see the intern they'd sent off. "The surgery has just finished and your wife is stable. The surgeon will be out to talk to you in just a moment."

I was too numb to talk, so Amelia thanked him for me and then led me to a chair to sit down. Jackson still wouldn't let go of me, but I was okay with that. Amelia sat beside me, her hand on my shoulder, and Tray stood beside her, holding her other hand. The surgeon came out a few minutes later, and I stood up.

"Mr. Northman, I'm Dr. Brigant. Your wife is going to be fine. It sounds a lot worse than it was. We repaired the laceration to her liver, and the bleeding has stopped. She made it through the surgery just fine. She also has some bruised ribs and dislocated shoulder. Nothing that won't heal."

"When can I see her?"

"A nurse will come and get you once they have her in recovery, but she won't be waking up for another couple of hours at least."

"Okay, thank you," I told him, shook his hand, then he walked away. I turned to Amelia and Tray, who both enveloped me in a hug.

"Look, if it's going to be a couple of hours, if you two want to go home and come back in the morning that's fine."

"I want to see her before I go home," Amelia said. She was digging her heels in on this. Sookie and her had been friends since they were kids. "Tray, why don't you go on home and relieve the sitter? I wasn't able to tell her when we'd be back."

"Give Sookie my love," he told her, and gave her a kiss. I thanked him for bringing me, and then he left.

Amelia sat with me in the waiting room, occasionally attempting to get Jackson to let go of me, but he refused, and after a half hour he finally fell asleep. I held him in my arms and took the opportunity to check him over. He didn't have any bruises or cuts that I could see, and I finally let out a sigh of relief. With it came the tears.

I knew I wouldn't feel fully relieved until I saw that Sookie was okay, but going from the paralyzing fear that I'd lost them both to knowing they were both okay was one insane emotional roller coaster. Amelia wrapped an arm around my back and laid her head on my shoulder.

"They're okay," she said.

I just nodded and continued to cry quietly over my sleeping son. I honestly don't know what I would have done if I'd lost him, or Sookie. They were absolutely everything to me.

After about an hour Amelia went to get us both some water. When she got back, a nurse came up to us and asked me if I was Mr. Northman. I confirmed it, and she told me Sookie was awake and headed up to recovery. I scooped Jackson up, and we all went with the nurse up to another part of the hospital. I wasn't paying any attention to where we were going, only hoping Sookie would really be alright.

The nurse led us into a room, and that was when the full-on relief finally hit me. Sookie was sitting in an elevated bed, and she looked like hell, but she was alive. I handed the still-sleeping Jackson to Amelia and rushed over to her. Mindful of the tubes, and careful not to touch her abdomen or her shoulder, I wrapped her in my arms and cried into her hair.

"Eric," she sobbed into my sweater. "I'm so sorry. Jackson's okay, right?"

"He's fine. He's okay," I told her. "What happened?"

"We were going down the road and some jackass comes barreling around a corner and slams into us. The car flipped, but we landed right side up. There were a lot of people around, and someone was already calling for help as they came to see if we were okay. I was so out of it. I could hear Jackson screaming in the backseat, but I couldn't get to him, and I couldn't speak, and I just… I passed out and woke up here. Is he really okay?"

"Yeah," I said, and Amelia brought him over. She handed him to me again and then hugged Sookie. They had their moment, and then Sookie reached for Jackson. He was slowly waking up, and when he saw his mother, he immediately clung to her neck like he had mine. A fresh batch of tears came out as she held him tightly to her.

"I'm so sorry," she cried. "If anything had happened to him…"

"I know," I said, and put my hand over the one that was resting on Jackson's back.

"Excuse me," said a voice from the door, and I turned to see two police officers standing there. "Mrs. Northman, we need to get your statement regarding the accident."

Sookie nodded, so I took Jackson and sat in the chair next to the bed. Amelia went out to call Tray. The officer pulled out his notebook and pen, and stood at the foot of the bed.

"What do you remember about the accident?" he asked.

"I was driving down Main, and the stoplight had just turned green, so I went on through. This huge pick-up came out of nowhere and slammed into the side of my car. My car rolled, I'm not sure how many times, then we stopped upright. People came running up to my car, and then I passed out."

"Did you happen to see what the driver of the truck looked like?" the officer asked.

Sookie shook her head. "No, the truck sat high, and it happened too fast."

"Can you tell us the color of the truck?"

"It was red."

The officer read her statement back to her, had her read and sign it, then they told us they would be in touch with us tomorrow with more information.

"Mommy," Jackson said as he squirmed off my lap, and up onto the bed. He immediately snuggled into Sookie's arms. When he saw the sling on her arm he sat up and pointed at it. "Owie."

"Yes, that's an owie," she laughed. "Do you have any owies?"

He started pulling at his shirt, so I took it off of him. There were light bruises on his shoulders from the straps of the car seat.

"Owies," he said, then he signed the word bath. We usually gave him a bath after he got hurt. It had been my idea to teach him sign language, and Sookie was all for it as well. It gave him the ability to tell us what he wanted or needed without throwing a fit because we couldn't understand.

"You want a bath?" Sookie asked, and he nodded and signed it again. "You better take him back when Amelia goes."

"I don't want to leave you," I said.

"I know, but Jackson needs to be at home right now. We can't just ask Amelia and Tray to watch him because he needs one of us. I'll be fine here, I promise. The nurse told me I would likely get discharged tomorrow. Take Jack home, feed the poor kid, give him a bath, and snuggle up with him in our bed."

I couldn't really argue with her about it. He needed to eat, and he needed to be at home. The day had been traumatic enough for him without making him stay overnight at the hospital.

"Okay, I'll take him home when Amelia leaves."

"I'll probably just sleep all night anyway. I feel like hell."

"I'll call your boss tonight when I get home."

'Thank you," she said, and looked up at me with tears in her eyes. "I really… I really am sorry."

Jackson was quietly mumbling to himself as he tried to figure out the guardrail on the side of the bed, so I leaned forward and kissed my wife.

"You have nothing to be sorry for. It was not your fault, and there's nothing you could have done to prevent it. Our son is okay, you are okay, and that is all that matters."

She nodded, and I could tell she was trying to believe it, but it would take some time. I could only imagine the kind of guilt she was feeling. Amelia came back in not long after that, and Jackson started to get fussy and sign the word 'eat.'

"We better get him home," I said, grabbing him so I could put his shirt back on.

"I've got the kids' seats in my car, so we're good," Amelia said.

"Jack, we're going to go home, and we'll come get Mommy tomorrow," I told him.

"Mommy come," he said.

"Sweetie, mommy has owies the doctors have to look at. You go with daddy and eat, then take a bath. You can come get me tomorrow."

He didn't understand most of what she said, but she'd signed the words 'eat' and 'bath,' so Jackson focused on those, and repeated them with his hands.

"That's right, but you have to go with daddy," she said. "Now give me hugs."

He wrapped his arms around her neck and gave her a big kiss on the cheek, and then I picked him up. Amelia took him from me so I could say goodbye to Sookie. I wrapped her into a big hug and held her for a moment.

"I love you," I whispered.

"I love you," she replied. "I'll see you tomorrow."

I nodded, kissed her, then we left. Amelia went to get her car and pull it up to the entrance, so I waited there with Jackson. I had no idea what happened to his coat, and I was too exhausted to try and find it, so I wrapped him in mine instead. We were only waiting a couple of minutes before Amelia was there. I opened the car door, took my coat off Jackson, then sat him in the car seat. As soon as he realized what he was sitting in a panicked look crossed his face, and he reached for me.

"Come on, Jack. Daddy needs to buckle you in," I said as he grabbed onto my sweater and tried to pull himself out of the seat. I pulled his hands free and gently put him back in the seat, and that's when he burst into hysterical tears and started screaming, "No! No! No!"

"Jack, calm down," I said, but he didn't. He got louder and more upset each time I tried to buckle him in, so I pulled him out of the car and held him. Amelia got out of the car and asked me what was wrong.

"I think he remembers," I said, tears in my own eyes. I hated that I couldn't take away his fear or tell him anything that would make him feel better. "Do you have a spare blanket in there?"

"Yeah, always," she said, and pulled it out from the floorboard.

"Drape it over him please. I don't want him getting sick."

She did as I asked, and when he was covered I did something only Sookie did for him. I sang.

Close your eyes
Have no fear
The monster's gone
He's on the run, and your daddy's here

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy
Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy

Before you go to sleep
Say a little prayer
Every day in every way
It's getting better and better

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy
Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy

His breathing was calming, and by the time I started the song over again, he was asleep. Amelia moved the other car seat, and I got into the back on that side, then very carefully buckled him into his seat. I sat next to him and held his hand the whole way back to our house.

Amelia dropped us off, and I thanked her for everything. It really was a blessing having them live around the corner. We would definitely be getting them a big Christmas present this year.

Jackson woke up again as I was carrying him inside, and immediately wanted down. He walked into the living room and then went right for his toy box. I smiled at him as he started pulling toys out, glad that things seemed to be normal for now. After hanging my coat up I called the auto shop and let them know what happened and that I would need my vehicle back as soon as possible. I would have to call the insurance company about Sookie's car tomorrow when I found out where it was. For now I just wanted to feed my son, give him a bath, and go to sleep.

"Jack," I called out to him. "Let's go eat."

He came around the corner on all fours, and I laughed. He reverted back to crawling when he wanted to get somewhere really fast. I scooped him up off the floor and carried him into the kitchen. He went into his high chair without fuss, and immediately started slapping his hands on the tray.

"Hold on, I'm getting it," I told him. "I swear I feel like a waitress sometimes with you. It's a good thing your smiles are better tips than money."

The kid must have been starving, because he ate quickly, and wanted more when he was done. When he was finally finished, I stripped him and took him upstairs for a bath. He loved baths, and always made excited squealing noises when I turned the water on. I stood him next to the tub so he could watch it fill and help me throw his toys in. When I turned the water off, he started pulling on his diaper and fussing.

"Hold your horses," I said as I pulled the diaper off and threw it in the trashcan. I made sound effects when I lifted him up high and then lowered him into the water, making him laugh. He immediately started splashing in the water, but we always washed him up before letting him play so that when he was done we could just pull him out.

Just as I finished rinsing the shampoo out of his hair, the house phone rang. Sookie and I had one of the handsets in our room, so I ran across the hall to get it.

"Hello?" I answered as I walked back into the bathroom.

"It's me. A nurse told me how to get a line out," Sookie said.

"Is everything okay?" I asked.

"Yeah, I just miss you guys. How is he?"

"He freaked out when I tried to put him in the car seat, but I got him calmed down. He ate, and now he's in the bath."

"I can hear him splashing," she said, and I could tell she was smiling. "How are his bruises?"

"They haven't gotten any darker, and he doesn't seem bothered by them. He's going to be fine. In a week he won't even remember."

"I hope so."

"How are you?" I asked, finally realizing that I hadn't asked her yet, and should have.

"Sore."

"That's not what I meant."

"I know. I feel guilty, no matter how much I shouldn't. I'm scared to death at the thought of how bad it could have been. I just wish we'd stayed home. I hate the thought of Jack being frightened and not being able to explain anything or make it better."

"I know what you mean. But we have to remember that he's young, and in a couple of weeks he won't remember it. This would be easier if we were all together right now."

"I know. We will be tomorrow… hold on, a nurse just walked in," she said, then I heard Sookie and the nurse talking quietly, and a moment later she was back. "I have to go now, they want to check my wound."

"Okay. I love you, Sookie," I said.

"I love you, too. Sweet dreams."

"Goodnight," I said, then we hung up.

Jackson was playing away in the tub, and normally I would sit on the floor and read a book, but this time I sat and watched him. I just couldn't take my eyes off of him. I noted every smile, every facial expression, every noise. I wouldn't take them for granted again.

When he started to wrinkle, I pulled him out and took him to his room to get him ready for bed. He got a rubdown with this baby lotion Sookie insisted we use, then a new diaper, then I put him in his footie pajamas.

"What movie do you want tonight?" I asked him as I combed his hair.

"Boo!" he said with a bounce.

"Alright," I smiled. "Boo, it is."

Boo was Jack's name for Monsters Inc. He loved the movie, and more often than not, it was his choice when he got to watch one. I grabbed the DVD from his shelf, then set him on the floor.

"Jack, get your blanket and Peanut," I told him.

He went to his crib and pulled the blanket from in between the bars, then picked up his little yellow stuffed elephant from the floor. After he had them both he looked up at me with a smile.

"Let's go to my room," I said, and he turned and toddled out the room and down the hall.

He was still trying to climb up on the bed by the time I had the movie in, so I picked him up and planted him up by the pillows. After getting the movie started, I told Jack I'd be right back and headed downstairs to my study to get my laptop. I made sure all the doors were locked and stopped in the kitchen to warm Jack up some milk. My stomach growled, but I wasn't really up for cooking, so I grabbed a granola bar for myself, inhaled it, then headed back upstairs with everything.

Jack had gotten his legs under the covers, and was lying back on the pillows with his hands behind his head.

"Comfortable?" I asked with a smile.

"Milk!" he said, and I handed it to him. He tucked the cup into the bed next to him so it would be there when he was ready, then reassumed his comfy position.

I set my computer down on my bed stand and went to the dresser to get some clothes, which I took to the bathroom to change and get ready for bed. When I walked back into the bedroom Jack was drinking his milk, which meant he was going to pass out soon. I crawled into bed and powered up my laptop.

Now that things had calmed down, I wanted to get my feelings out on paper. My writing was very cathartic in that way, and I had experienced a lot I wanted to get out. I opened a fresh document and wrote until I glanced over at Jack to find him slowly nodding off. It was adorable the way he fought to stay awake. His little eyes would start to droop, and then just as they closed all the way he jumped slightly and opened his eyes wide again. I saved my work and shut down my computer before setting it on my bed stand again.

"Let's go to sleep, little man," I said, sliding under the covers and scooting over to Jack. His milk was gone, so I reached over and set the cup on Sookie's bed stand, then I turned the TV off with the remote.

I lay on my side and pulled Jackson over to my chest. He loved to snuggle, and I'd gotten into the habit of taking naps with him daily. He curled right up and closed his eyes.

"Goodnight, Jack. I love you," I whispered, and that was the last thing I remember before sleep took me.

The next morning I woke up to Jack laying on my chest. He was still asleep, so I carefully set him aside and got up. I used the bathroom, jumped in the shower quickly, then called the hospital to see when they were releasing Sookie. They said they would be releasing her in just a few hours, so I called Amelia to see if she could watch Jackson for a while. By the time I got off the phone with her, Jackson was waking up.

Ever since college I'd been a morning person. I was used to waking up early to go to the gym before classes, and it just stuck. I never really required much sleep, and that had come in handy when Jack wasn't sleeping through the night. Sookie, on the other hand, was by no means a morning person. Most days I didn't even try to talk to her until she had some coffee in her. Jack took after her, and since he was too young for coffee, he got snuggled awake instead.

As soon as he saw me, his arms went up in the air, the universal language for, 'pick me up now.' I did, and he immediately snuggled into my neck as I took him over to his room to get him a fresh diaper. He yawned and rubbed his eyes all through the process, something that never stopped being cute.

"Are you hungry?" I asked, and he just nodded slightly. "Let's go get some breakfast."

Jack snuggled back into my neck when I carried him downstairs, and moped in his high chair while I got his breakfast ready. About halfway through his food he started to perk up, and by the time he was done he was ready to run around, but I had to get him dressed and over to Amelia and Tray's house so I could go get Sookie. Amelia was going to let me borrow her car to do that.

I dressed Jack in a pair of jeans and a long-sleeved sweater. The kid took after me in that respect. He loved his sweaters. When he was dressed I took him to the bathroom to tame his bed head, then packed a few diapers and other essentials in a spare diaper bag.

The weather was warmer again, so we walked over to Amelia and Tray's house. Jack fussed until I let him walk on his own, but I held his hand the whole way there. When we got there, Jack immediately went off to play with Laura, who was very good with him. Their other daughter was still a baby but I was sure she'd join in when she was old enough.

"Thanks for watching him," I told her when I gave her a hug in greeting. "I fed him breakfast, and we should be back before lunch so you shouldn't have to worry about a meal."

"Don't worry, Eric, I won't give him sugar," she smiled.

"Thanks. See you in a little bit."

When I got to the hospital I stopped in the gift shop to buy Sookie some flowers, then headed up to her room. She smiled brightly when she saw me, and got tears in her eyes when she saw the flowers.

"I should have known," she said. "I think I married the most romantic guy ever."

I handed her the flowers and let her smell them before I kissed her. She pulled away quickly.

"I haven't brushed since yesterday morning," she blushed, and I smiled.

"That's why I brought this," I said, holding up a duffel bag. "Change of clothes, toothbrush, toothpaste, and your hairbrush."

"I love you," she said, looking up at me like I was some kind of God.

"I know, now kiss me proper."

We were still kissing when a nurse walked in and cleared her throat.

"Sorry," Sookie apologized to her, and I chuckled.

"We're about to discharge you, do you have any more questions about anything?" the nurse asked.

"Nope, the other nurse told me everything earlier, I think I'm good to go. Can I get changed now?"

"You sure can," she said, and came over to unhook Sookie from everything.

She was still sore, so I helped her to the bathroom and helped her get dressed. She showed me her bandage and told me we'd need to stop at the store so she could get some things to take care of it. I took in her naked body and frowned. She may not have had any broken bones, but she was bruised almost all over.

"Hey," she said, "look at me. I'm fine. Bruises heal, this wound will heal, and my shoulder will heal."

"I know, but I don't like seeing you this beat up," I said. "I don't want you to be hurting."

"Then help me put some clothes on, then take me home and nurse me back to health."

I could do that. I got her dressed, then went out to sign her discharge papers. A nurse had to push Sookie out in a wheelchair, and that was that. We headed to the store to get the things she needed, and she was able to walk around, but I could tell she was feeling stiff and sore. While we were in the store, the garage called and said my car was ready to be picked up anytime, and they offered their sincerest apologies about the accident. They would definitely be getting a big tip. On the drive back to Amelia and Tray's the insurance people called. I let Sookie talk to them since I was driving, and when she got off the phone she had a slight smile on her face.

"Looks like we have to go pick out a new car this week," she said.

"One less thing to worry about," I said, reaching over to hold her hand.

I didn't want Sookie to have to walk back to the house, so I dropped her off first, then took Amelia's car back to her. Jack was watching TV and totally uninterested in me until I asked him if he wanted to see mommy. He was off the couch and standing in front of me with his hands up in no time. I picked him up and thanked Amelia for watching him, and for the use of her car, then I got Jackson's bag and walked him home.

Sookie was sitting on the couch when we walked in the house, and Jack went right to her.

"Hi sweetie!" she said as she pulled him up on the couch with her good arm and hugged him. "Mommy missed you so much."

It felt good to all be together again, and we spent the next two weeks like that. By the second week Sookie said the surgery incision just felt like a bad bruise, and the rest of her injuries had healed except for her shoulder, but she was supposed to be out of the sling in a few days.

It turned out that the driver of the truck had been drunk. He was arrested and it looked like he would be getting jail time because it wasn't his first offence. Jackson's bruises were completely gone, and he didn't fuss over getting in a car seat anymore. Things were almost back to normal.

Sookie had a doctor's appointment a few days after she went back to work and they took off the sling. To celebrate, we decided to start a new tradition. One night a week we would go out on a date and spend the night alone. Jackson would sleep over at Amelia and Tray's house. In return, if they ever wanted us to do the same, we would watch the girls.

Sookie wore a new dress that showed off her cleavage, and I wore jeans and a button down with a sweater over it. We dropped Jackson off and then went to dinner at a fancy restaurant.

"We haven't had a date in forever," Sookie said, smiling at me from behind her menu.

"I like it. I think we should do this more often."

"If we're not off sneaking calls to check on Jack, then yes," she laughed.

"He'll be fine. It's not like we're leaving him with people he doesn't know," I reasoned.

"You're right. Besides, I'd hate to ruin our alone time tonight," she said, and I felt her foot run up the inside of my leg.

I swallowed. We hadn't done anything since before the accident, and we hadn't done anything loud since before Jack was born. My God, was I ever looking forward to tonight.

"I would hate that too," I said, shifting uncomfortably in my seat. My jeans were becoming tight.

She giggled a little, and her foot retreated just as the waiter came to take our order. I caught him staring down Sookie's dress a few times, and along with wanting to hit him, I also found myself feeling quite proud. Not that I thought of Sookie as a trophy wife or something, nothing like that, it was just because I knew she was hot, and I knew she was mine. That waiter could lust after her all he wanted, but he would never have her.

The whole dinner was like foreplay. Sookie made noises as she ate, and occasionally rubbed my inner thigh with her foot, while I did suggestive things to my utensils. By the time we were leaving I was ready to pull her into a bathroom and ravage her, but I had other, more romantic plans.

First up was the local old-time restored theater, and they were playing none other than Casablanca that night. It was purely out of luck, and I jumped on the opportunity to take Sookie. She was pleasantly surprised to discover what movie we were seeing, and were it not for the large crowd in the theater, I'm sure some pleasure would have been had. Instead we settled for holding hands.

"Do you have any more plans for this date?" Sookie asked as we walked out of the theater after the movie.

"Nope. I say we check in with Amelia, and then we head home."

"Sounds perfect."

Amelia assured us that Jack was doing fine, and said he had gone to sleep about an hour ago. We went home to our quiet house, and I asked Sookie to pour us some wine and not come up to the bedroom until I called for her. She seemed like she just wanted to get on with it, but I'd never really been able to do that when I wanted to be romantic.

While she did as I asked, I ran upstairs and started lighting all the candles I'd bought and hid away for this night. By the time I called her up, the room was practically dancing from the flickering light of the flames. I loved the way her nude skin looked in firelight.

"Eric," she said in awe when she walked into the room. "You didn't have to do this."

"I know, but I wanted to. I almost lost you, and that…. It made me appreciate life, and you, and Jack so much more than I already did. Now that you're all healed I want to show you just how much I love and appreciate you."

"You show me that every day," she said, handing me my glass of wine. I took a sip and set it on the dresser, then I put hers there as well before pulling her to me and kissing her.

"And I'll continue to show you everyday," I whispered in her ear. "For the rest of our lives. I promise."

She kissed my lips hard, and pushed me backwards onto the bed. I rested on my elbows and watched as she unbuckled my belt and unbuttoned my jeans. I lifted my hips so she could pull them off, but she left my boxers. I sat up and pulled off my sweater, then Sookie unbuttoned my shirt and pulled it off. I grabbed her and pulled her on top of me, kissing her neck as I did. We rolled and she giggled.

"I feel weird knowing we don't have to be quiet," she said.

"Don't feel weird, just be loud for me. I miss the sound of your moans," I said as my hand found the zipper on the back of her dress and pulled it down.

"I don't know, it's been so long since I've been able to be loud. My brain is set on quiet," she smiled up at me and shimmied out of her dress as I pulled it off.

"You, my dear, are wearing stockings with bows," I said, taking in her nearly nude body. "You know what that does to me."

"I know what lace panties do to you, too," she giggled.

"I love it when you indulge me."

"I love to indulge you."

"Let's get this bra off of you though," I said, climbing back on top of her. It was frontal clasp, and it was gone in seconds, freeing her magnificent breasts. I couldn't wait for her to get pregnant again because pregnancy made them even better. Of course, she mostly complained about them, but I enjoyed the benefits.

I licked her collarbone, and then down her chest to pay some attention to the breasts I loved so much. She was letting out light, breathy moans, so I worked my way even lower until I was settled between her legs. I kissed and nibbled on her thighs until she began to squirm, which was when I ripped off her lace panties. She let out an excited squeal, and then started giggling.

"Let me hear you," I said as I stared up at her. She was already watching me because we both liked it, and she smiled at my request. She also gladly filled it. I got very into it because of the noises she was making, and I was pretty sure that she came harder than she had in a year.

"Fuck, Eric," she panted as I kissed my way up her body. She pulled me into a kiss as soon as I reached her neck.

"I need you," she said.

"When I got that call from the hospital … I've never felt more scared in my life. I found my soul mate when I found you, and if I lose you, I lose myself. I'll die if you die."

"I don't want to cry while we're having sex," she said, trying to laugh off the seriousness.

"I don't care if you cry," I said. "It's not like it'll be because I'm doing an awful job."

We both laughed, and kissed, and teased each other a bit longer, and then she gently told me to make love to her. I took my time with it. There were still hours for us to be loud and rough, but right now I wanted nothing more than be cheesy and romantic and perfect.

Sookie didn't cry, but she did start to make small gasping noises as she got closer and closer to the edge. I kissed her and told her I loved her.

"I love you," she gasped, and then she came. I loved to watch her face when she lost control. Her eyes clenched shut and her mouth opened slightly as she tried to gasp in air. The look and feel of her losing it made me go over too. I groaned and buried my face in her neck as I came.

I didn't want to collapse on her, but I didn't want to pull out either, so I rolled us until she was lying on top of me. Sookie kissed my chest and neck until we both caught our breath.

"You are perfect," I said. My hands rubbed the smooth skin of her back, and down to her butt to squeeze it.

"I'm glad you think so," she giggled. "You're perfect too."

"Thank you," I preened, making her slap my shoulder.

"Cocky tonight," she said.

"Very," I said, rotating my hips a bit so she could feel that I was getting ready for round two. She moaned and kissed me until round two was commenced.

Round three happened in the shower, and then before passing out we had a very slow and sweet round four. It was a wonder we were able to, but I was very happy that we still couldn't get enough of each other.

The weather was nice the next day, so we put on our jackets and walked to Amelia and Tray's house to get Jack. He was very excited to see us, and we both got big hugs and kisses from him.

"How'd he do?" Sookie asked Amelia.

"He woke up once, kind of confused, and it took a bit to get him back to sleep, but other than that he was perfect. I'd say it was a successful first night away from home."

"Thank you guys, so much," I said. "We really needed it."

"I'm sure you did," Tray said with a wink.

Sookie rolled her eyes, but she was blushing. I loved that it still made her blush like that.

"Well we'll get this one out of your hair. Y'all want to come over for dinner tonight?" Sookie asked.

"We'd love to," Amelia answered.

We talked for a few more minutes, then Sookie and I headed out. Jack wanted to walk, so we each took one of his hands, which led to him counting, which meant he wanted us to swing him. He would count to three, then we'd lift him and swing, causing him to laugh loudly.

When we got home Jack went to the living room to play, and I went to my study to get my computer. Instead of holing up in my office like I usually did to write, I set up in the living room so I could watch my son and wife play together. I'd never felt more content and happy in my life.

Not until about a month later…

"What does it say?" I asked Sookie when she peeked at the stick on the counter in the bathroom.

"Plus sign," she whispered, then let out a breath. "We're pregnant!"

"Holy crap!" I laughed, and she jumped into my embrace.

"I'm so happy," she said into my neck.

"Me too," I smiled. "Me too."