Disclaimer: All characters belong to Stephenie Meyer. The plot, along with a couple of characters that might be added in future, are mine.


I tried so hard to stay strong; strong for my kids, Charlie… for me. My unit depended on me so I knew that I couldn't let them down. As I held that little boy's lifeless body in my arms, I couldn't help but think about my boy and all the milestones I'd missed: his first steps, his first words, and his first birthday.

I couldn't breathe…

I miss you Mommy.

I love you Mommy.

Be safe Mommy.

My eyes flooded with tears but I couldn't allow myself to cry. Not when I was surrounded by my men… not even when I saw his eyes. He only had to look into mine to understand how desperate I felt.

"Swan, give me the kid," Whitlock said.

I held his tiny body against my chest and shook my head. "No."

"I need to take him to the medic," he pressured.

"He's gone," I hissed. "So get the fuck away from me Whitlock."

"Newton, McCarty, Hunter," Sarge called with authority. "Return to your positions."

"Yes, Sir," they said and each of them ran out of the warehouse and on different directions.

"Whitlock, get the kid to the medic, he knows what to do."

"No," my voice cracked.

"That's an order, Swan," he said firmly.

Jasper kneeled and took the little boy that was tucked into my jacket from my arms. "Sergeant," he said to him, nodded and left.

My eyes were glued on Jasper as he left the warehouse. Once the building was empty he kneeled in front of me, took off his helmet and placed his gun next to him. My body started shaking; both from shock and his close proximity. With a gentle touch he took off my helmet and placed it right next to his. I rested my forehead on my knees and tried to control myself but it was fruitless.

I wanted that boy to live.

I wanted to go home.

I wanted my babies.

I wanted my Dad.

I wanted him to want me…

"Bella," he whispered and wrapped his arms around me.

That was all it took. I broke down and started crying with every fiber I had in me; heartwrenching cries for everything I'd missed and experienced. Why? My God why? Why did I come here? Why did we have to risk our lives for a war that others started? Why did innocent people have to die? Why? Why?

"I'm here," he said as he rocked us both. "Hush, Bells."

"Ah, Edward," I sobbed.

"I know honey," he said and kissed the top of my head. "I know."

I'd no idea how long we sat on that cold cemented ground. Not once did he let go of me or try to say anything else. I could only hear him hum a tune I'd never heard before. It was soft, cleansing, and so pure. I closed my eyes and saw the faces of my kids- their smiles, their toothless grins as they sang 'Happy Birthday' to me, the sadness in their eyes every time they told me they missed me.

I was deployed to Iraq for twelve months and I've already been here for six. I had to go through another two without their tiny arms around me; without their kisses or cheerful Saturday wake up calls. I had to stay strong for them. All I did was for them… and him. He was the one that kept me sane while we talked at night. He was the one that encouraged me not to give up because I was so fucking tired of chasing death away from us.

I wished and hoped for things between us to change. I wanted us to be together, but I knew that it wasn't possible. He was my First Sergeant and I was under his command. He always had my back and I his. I had the back of my entire unit. He always asked for my whereabouts whenever we returned from a small mission or patrol and I hadn't checked in with him. . He always rocked me to heaven by just a simple touch.

He shifted slightly and I started panicking. "Don't leave me," I said no more than a whisper. Gone was the strong and independent woman.

He sighed and lifted my chin with his fingers to look at me. He ran his thumbs gently over my cheekbones and wiped my tears. "Never sweetheart," he vowed forcefully, his voice breaking slightly. "Never."

Missed me? *grins widely*

This is my new story. I hope you enjoyed the prologue. I've written a couple of chapters so far. I need to have at least four before starting to post.

This story will be a slow burn… slow burn. So please do me a favor and don't complain about the pace. I already know how it'll go and when um… certain things will happen. I'm saying this now so we can have it out of the way. I will not change the pace.

There will be teasers but not in every chapter. Sometimes it makes it difficult to choose. I'll do my best though, I promise you that.

A huge thank you to cejsmom for her super skills in editing and to Monique who helps me with the terms and any crazy question that pops into my head and Nehnah. Now I can't promise that you won't see mistakes in here but I give you my word to be as accurate as possible…

JA Mash helped with the manips for my banner which you can on my profile… Thank you!

Waiting to hear your thoughts so please leave a review and tell me what you think…

Until next time,