"Please tell me I'm not too late!" Bonnie cried as she rushed into her parents' bedroom.
"Bonnie, my darling!" Scarlett cried as she embraced her daughter. "He's still alive, but just barely," she continued.
With heavy hearts, they both looked at the bed upon which Rhett lay. Bonnie was shocked to see how pale and weak he looked.
"Father!" She went to him and embraced him.
"Bonnie." Rhett was barely strong enough to speak. "I'm so glad you're here."
"Of course I'm here. I came as soon as I heard," Bonnie said.
"He's fine. Both of us are."
"How's life in London?"
"It rains a lot, but other than that, we really like it. England's a beautiful country."
"So, when are you going to make me a grandfather?" Rhett's face bore the slightest hint of a smile.
"Hopefully soon." Bonnie smiled back. "I'm so glad to see you again, Father, although I dearly wish it were under better circumstances."
Bonnie was sitting at Rhett's side, holding his hand, when he slipped into a coma a few hours later.
Penelope gradually slid her hand back up Beau's leg, and this time, it did make contact with his crotch. Beau suddenly jumped to his feet as if he'd just been stung by a bee.
"You tricked me!" he accused. "You came here just to seduce me, didn't you?"
"Why, no." Penelope shook her head with feigned innocence. "I just thought that perhaps you could use some company..."
"Please leave," Beau said tersely, struggling to control his indignation. "Bonnie's the only woman I love, and I'll never be untrue to her."
Disappointed, Penelope gathered her things and swiftly returned to her own quarters.
Rhett's funeral was a very sad affair. Adam and Careen were there with Katie, who was now in her teens, and her younger brother, Adam, Junior. Ashley and Melanie came with their daughter Natalie, who was slightly younger than Katie.
Scarlett was secretly pleased to see that Ashley was now almost completely bald. He attempted to comfort Melanie as she sobbed copiously. After the ceremony had ended, Natalie approached Bonnie's younger brother Daniel.
"I'm so sorry about your father," she said.
"He was always so full of life," Daniel replied. "I just can't believe he's really gone."
"At least you can take comfort in knowing that he's in a better place now," Natalie said. Without really realizing it, the two of them had started walking together.
"I know that," Daniel said. "But it still hurts."
"I'm so sorry," Natalie repeated, taking Daniel's hand.
On the long trip back over the ocean, all Bonnie could think about was how much she missed Beau and how badly she wanted to see him again. Even with her mother and brother there to share in her grief, she'd felt so alone at her father's funeral. Many times, on the ship, she awakened from a sad dream about her father with nothing to hold onto but a pillow, no one to dry her tears.
When she finally arrived back in London, she felt as if she'd been gone for a very long time. The last time I was here, my father was still alive, she told herself. Trying desperately to push the agonizing thought from her mind, she eagerly scanned the faces waiting at the dock for that of Beau.
At last. There he was. She ran to meet him, and he threw his arms around her and embraced her tightly. She held onto him as if she never wanted to let go.
"Did you get there in time?" Beau asked.
"Just barely," Bonnie told him. "He was still conscious when I arrived, but he slipped into a coma a few hours later and never awakened."
"I'm so sorry," Beau said.
"I'm just ever so happy to see you again," Bonnie told him.
"So am I, darling." He took her arm and they slowly walked home.
As soon as they were back in the privacy of their bedroom, they practically tore the clothing from their bodies and lay down on the bed together. After weeks of deprivation, they were both eager to make up for lost time.
"I want a baby," Bonnie murmured as her husband lavished kisses on her.
"So do I," said Beau. "Maybe this time it'll happen."
"Oh, I hope so," Bonnie replied.
As she and her husband joined bodies and began to make love, for the first time in many days, she began to feel ever so slightly that things were gradually returning to normal.