Characters aren't mine, that is all.

Word Prompt: Rank

"Mommy, what if I mess up?" Our nervous little Rachel whispered into my ear as the First Sergeant's voice droned on and on through his speech. I had sat through more of these ceremonies than I cared to count and they were all the same, only today was somewhat different. Instead of a line of soldier's being promoted, it was just Edward. And, instead of having to waddle my eight month pregnant self to pin him for Staff Sergeant, Rachel would get the honors of Sergeant First Class.

Four months after Edward redeployed back home, we gave birth to a green eyed, blonde haired six pound, seven ounces baby girl who we named Rachel Marie. Parenthood wasn't kind to us at first, with Rachel's colic and trying to juggle school, I just decided putting school on hold made the most sense. My parents hated it, even I hated it, while Edward kept his opinions to himself, and we knew it made the most sense.

Three months later, just as Rachel began to calm down and actually sleep for more than ten minutes at a time, the orders showed up. When Edward walked through the door I swore it was deployment orders…I had already heard they were coming, but instead we were met with a new assignment, Fort Lee, Virginia.

Edward's job came with a Top Secret Security Clearance which came more secrets. I knew the basic's and had to get a pass for me and Rachel anytime we visited, but outside of that I never asked and he never told.

Moving away from my parents was hard on me at first, especially with Rachel being so young, but eventually we found a rhythm that worked for us. Edward's job meant no deploying as long as he kept it, so we bought a house. Every weekend we'd invite friends over or visa and versa, and somehow we fell into a small close knit group of people we could count on.

When I had to go to the ER for bleeding at seven weeks, one phone call and Rachel had a place to go. Though Edward didn't deploy, he did take short TDY missions every now and again, though they normally lasted no longer than a few weeks. The bleeding didn't get better until I hit the second trimester, and as one hand stayed rested to keep Rachel still, my other laid over my seven month pregnant belly. We were expecting Abigail in about six weeks or so, and we were so excited.

When the microphone changed hands, I stood up with Rachel and brought her to the side. She quickly let go of my hand and ran straight up to Edward who had knelt down so she could get to his chest.

I watched him whisper something to her; she giggled then tore his E-6 rank on and exchanged it for his E-7 patch. I swore it was the hormones that made my eyes water, but there were plenty of people ooh and awing in the crowd around us.

Edward stood back up again with Rachel on his hip, as everyone clapped and cheered. I walked up a few seconds later allowing a few pictures to be snapped. I was always proud of Edward, but knowing what it took for this promotion, I knew how much it meant to him.

Rank never was a factor in why I loved Edward. He could have been a private when I met him, and I still knew I'd forever be at his side. It wasn't about the money or the uniform, it was about him. As his lips brushed over my forehead and we greeted the members of his command, I knew this was exactly where I was meant to be.

I never imagined that I would chose to be a stay-at-home mom, just like I never imagined myself as an Army wife. But, I wasn't really an Army wife, I was Edward's wife, and Edward just happened to be a soldier.

Though times would never always be perfect, disagreements would pop up, and our children would grate at every last nerve I had, I'd always think back to that cold, snowy day when I simply asked my soldier if he needed a ride.


So, like yesterday, thank you times a million! My new story will pop up soon...maybe even tonight if I put off couponing again, LOL. For those who don't know, it actually takes an act of Congress to achieve ranks E-7 to E-9 so they ARE kind of a huge deal.