Heartache Turns to Joy
Calleigh woke the next morning before Horatio and was startled to see 9:35 on the clock, then remembering, she took the day off to be at home for the first day after he was released from the hospital. She rolled over and looked at Horatio sleeping so soundly, then looked closer noticing he had perspiration beading on his forehead. Slightly alarmed she placed her hand very lightly on his face and it felt hot. He needs a cool, damp bath cloth on his forehead she thought. I wonder if I should call Alexx?
She brought a damp cloth from the bathroom and sat down on the bed next to him, and the contact caused him to moan.
"Horatio…are you awake?
"Hmmm…Calleigh, that feels so good," he murmured as he reached up and touched his head.
"Handsome you have fever. I'm going to the kitchen and bring you back a muffin so you can take some Tylenol to help bring it down, ok?"
"Thank you Sweetheart."
After she left the room, Horatio began to push himself up against the headboard into a sitting position and felt a shot of pain that began at his right side travelled all the way up into his chest. It was severe enough to cause him to stop moving, thinking he would wait until it subsided before trying again. I sure hope it'll pass before Calleigh comes back, if she knew about it, she would call Alexx. Nothing against my friend, but I've seen her enough lately on a professional level. He stayed in bed until the Tylenol kicked in as Calleigh kept the cloth cool.
Later in the morning, as they finished breakfast, Kyle called and asked if he and Sam could come by about four to check on how his dad was feeling, and Horatio assured his son that he was fine, but Kyle insisted on seeing for himself. Horatio really felt guilty for being the reason they had come back from Atlanta just because he was shot. Sam's parents were finally able to arrange their busy schedule allowing them to spend some time with their daughter and Kyle, so they could get to know the young man better and his problems disrupted that opportunity.
Before lunch, Horatio slowly walked out on the patio. He needed to feel the sun's warmth on his aching body; Calleigh was getting their lunch together and he had made the salad, after which, she shooed him out telling him to go sit and rest. The Tylenol she gave him had helped bring down the fever from earlier in the morning, for which he was glad so they could enjoy a light lunch out on the patio consisting of baked sole with steamed asparagus and lemon ice box pie for desert. After finishing, Horatio was feeling quite tired, but wouldn't acknowledge to Calleigh how he felt, not wanting to worry her even more. But, he couldn't hide how he was feeling from her, she was so attuned to him she sensed it; plus, the tiredness in his eyes was very obvious, and she was also aware he was in more pain than he would admit.
"Care to take a nap with me Handsome? She asked smiling as she gently brushed his hair back with her fingers while snuggling in the patio swing.
"I'd love to Sweetheart."
Calleigh stood and took his hand in hers and helped him up on his feet and with their arms around each other they headed for their bed. Horatio turned so he could see her next to him as they walked and he whispered, "You are an amazing woman Calleigh. I love you. I'm constantly astonished by how much you love me."
"You, my sweet husband are so easy to love…and I treasure every day with you, and the anticipation of the new life that we have helped create," she purred as she placed his hand on her abdomen.
Horatio stopped in his tracks and kissed her with so much passion that they both were gasping for breath when their lips finally broke apart.
"Hmm, Calleigh, Sweetheart…the things you do to me," he said in a deep, husky tone that almost made her forget about his injury and push him against the wall.
The physical evidence of his passion was obvious when he pressed against her body, and she murmured, "Handsome…maybe I can help you out."
Horatio leaned back shaking his head no replying, "Thank you Sweetheart, but that wouldn't be fair to you. I can't do that. I can wait; maybe it won't be too long before I'm able to love you the way you deserve to be loved."
Lying down in their bed close together, they spent the first few minutes talking about the baby and briefly going over some names for boys and girls.
Calleigh whispered, "I love you Handsome…now get some rest," she responded as she gave him a sweet smile before they both drifted off to sleep..
Calleigh awoke two hours later and eased out of bed, careful not to disturb Horatio. Just as she entered the living room the doorbell rang.
Opening the door, Kyle and Sam greeted her, and then Kyle asked with a serious expression, "Calleigh…how's Dad?"
"He's sleeping right now, actually if I can keep him down, he should recover completely."
The three of them migrated to the kitchen to fix some tea, then after a few minutes they heard some noise behind them.
"Kyle…Sam, glad you would stop by. How are you?"
Quickly turning around, Kyle walked over to his Dad who was standing in the doorway, bracing himself against the doorframe.
"We're great Dad. I was going to ask you the same thing. Shouldn't you be in bed?" Kyle asked as he gently hugged his dad.
"I need to be up Son…it'll help me get stronger quicker. Isn't that right Sam?" The young girl answered that he was right and then gave Horatio a hug. "Besides, Calleigh has me drinking Essiac tea to help me heal," he tilted his head as smiled at his wife.
The next morning the alarm buzzed at 5:30 and Calleigh quickly reached out and turned it off so it wouldn't disturb Horatio. She rolled over to make sure he was still asleep and found he was not there. Then the shower turned on. What on earth? She got out of bed and walked into the bathroom to find Horatio in the shower.
"Handsome, what are you doing up? You're not planning on going in to the lab are you?"
The shower door opened and Horatio reached for a towel. "Sweetheart, I can sit there just as well as I can here. Besides, I can help with the paperwork."
"Calleigh…I'll be fine."
"You will just sit won't you?" Horatio smiled, "Horatio!"
Horatio prepared a breakfast of eggs and bacon and toast for them, but did not brew any coffee as Calleigh had to give it up because just to smell it, bothered her stomach. He would just wait and make a pot at the lab. Smiling to himself as he thought about how more than once she had lamented about the fact of not being able to enjoy her coffee and wondered how she would endure the next few months without it.
Calleigh insisted on driving them to work, saying it might bother his injury if he drove. Arriving at the lab, early as usual, Calleigh continued on to their office, while Horatio went directly to the employee lounge to make a pot of coffee. As the team began filtering in, they were not really too surprised that he was back so soon. He had always ignored what was best for his health to be there for them and the victims of crime in Miami.
As he walked into his office, Calleigh was not there and he assumed that she had gone down to the ballistics lab. He sat down and began on the stack of paperwork waiting for him on top of his desk when after a few minutes, Calleigh walked in; her face white as a sheet.
"Calleigh…what's the matter Sweetheart?" He inquired as he began walking toward her.
Calleigh told him she just needed to lie down for a minute on the couch that she just had a bout with morning sickness. Horatio eased down on the couch beside her, so he could comfort her. It hurt him to see her sick.
Horatio hung his head and whispered, "I'm sorry Sweetheart…is there anything I can do for you?"
She shook her head no as she laid there with one arm draped over her eyes, weakly replying,
"I'll be ok…it should pass after a bit."
Just then Eric stuck his head in through the door and said, "Calleigh…we have a call-out." Then he noticed her on the couch, "H is something wrong with Calleigh?"
"Morning sickness Eric, she'll be ok. I'll go with you on the call-out."
Calleigh suddenly sat straight up and then a wave of dizziness struck and she gripped Horatio's arm, stammering, "Horatio…you're not supposed to go on call-outs with your wound…I'll…" she suddenly jumped up and ran out the room, covering her mouth with one hand.
Horatio grimaced as he got to his feet and said, "Let's go Eric."
Before they left, Horatio asked one of the girls in the lab to look in on Calleigh to make sure she was ok and then left with Eric. As they walked out of the building Eric commented,
"I'm glad we don't have to be the one pregnant."
"Me and thee brother…women are definitely a lot stronger than we are."
Eric watched as Horatio struggled to climb into the Hummer and thought maybe Calleigh was right…this might not have been a good idea.
"H, you sure about this?"
Horatio turned to Eric and asked, "What do we have Eric?"
As he steered the Hummer out of the parking lot, Eric answered, "A young mother was found stabbed to death in her home with her 9 month old daughter lying beside her murdered in the same way."
Horatio turned and stared out the window, as he ran his hand back forth across his forehead. "Crimes are becoming more horrendous every day," he quietly commented.
Once at the scene, they exited the Hummer and walked over to Frank who was standing on the front porch of the house where the bodies were found.
Frank turned and saw his friend approaching, "H, what in the hell are you doing here?"
"Working Francis…working. Has Lohman arrived yet?"
"Yeah he's inside," Frank quipped as he watched Horatio walk into the house.
Frank turned to Eric, "Does Calleigh know he's out here?"
Agitated with Eric's answer he rolled his eyes and spouted, "What the hell kinda answer is that? She knows or she doesn't know Delko."
"She was with H when he said he'd go on the call out, but she had to leave abruptly…morning sickness." Frank then understood.
In the meantime at the lab –
Calleigh's stomach was feeling a little better and she walked back to the office only to find Horatio sat down heavily in the chair at his desk and thought, he went on that call-out, well, he's going to have to deal with me when he gets back. Seriously, what's he trying to do…kill himself? Eric could have waited a few minutes. Oh am I going to give him a piece of my mind when I see him. She left the office, unable to focus on the paperwork thinking she'd go down to ballistics to work with evidence there and then, she just might spend a little time in the indoor firing range, just to help release some hostility.
Horatio was walking around the perimeter of the large house looking for evidence that might, along with evidence found inside the house, lead them to the killer. They had to find the killer…what the animal did inside that house, made him sick. Frank noticed him and began walking in Horatio's direction to accompany him, but then was called back momentarily by a uniformed officer.
Walking around the back corner of the house, Horatio caught a glimpse of movement to his right, but was not quick enough to react and he felt the horrible pain as something punched him hard in his wounded side, buckling his knees and he went down hard on the driveway hugging his side.
Frank had just appeared when the young man struck Horatio and he screamed,
"Hey you SOB what do you think you're doing…DELKO!"
Eric heard Frank scream and took off running in that direction. He saw Horatio doubled up on the ground and Frank was running with his gun drawn down the sidewalk in pursuit of a young man in a full sprint. Eric screamed for Natalia to check on H as he took off across the yard, jumping over a low hedge to get ahead of Frank who was having difficulty keeping up. After running for about two blocks, Eric managed to tackle the man, subduing him to where he could cuff him.
"Get up," Eric yelled harshly as he jerked the young man to his feet.
"Horatio, I need to call an ambulance. You're in obvious pain," Natalia said as Horatio was moaning and gasping for breath holding his abdomen.
"NO…let…let me…rest. No…hospital…I'll be ok." Natalia looked skeptical at her boss as his face contorted in pain.
Eric walked back with the man that ran from the scene and shoved him toward Frank who quickly slammed him face first down on the trunk of a patrol car and began patting him down, checking for weapons or drugs. Eric walked away and went to check on Horatio.
"I didn't do nothin' man."
"NOTHING," Frank barked, "How about murder to start off with and then assault on a police officer."
"I didn't kill nobody! I didn't know y'all were cops…I thought it might be the man I saw running out of the house, coming back with friends. I was standing next door and saw him run out without locking the door so, I just thought I'd let myself in and see what I could find. Then I found the dead woman and baby…I was almost clear of the back porch when y'all showed up. I'm a thief, but I ain't no murderer!"
Eric found Horatio sitting up against the house with Natalia crouching beside him. "H, how you doin?" He asked as he nervously glanced over to Natalia.
"Better Eric. I'm good. Help me get up." Eric stood up and took Horatio's left arm as Natalia positioned herself on his other side to help support him. Horatio wobbled slightly and Eric continued to hold his arm until he felt like Horatio was steady enough.
"H, I need to take you to the ER."
"I'll be fine Eric."
"H…"and that brought an angry stare from Horatio as Eric threw up his hands and quickly said,
"OK…ok, no hospital."
They walked over to Frank who was interrogating the young man and Horatio joined in. After a few minutes, Horatio determined the man was telling the truth and asked Frank to book him on assault on a police officer and then take him down and get him with one of the detectives that uses the computer sketch program to get the suspect's picture out to the media.
Having left the crime scene, Eric and Horatio pulled up at the crime lab and saw Calleigh standing on the steps waiting.
"Um, Calleigh doesn't look too happy H."
"I noticed," Horatio said as he slowly climbed down out of the Hummer.
Calleigh saw Horatio get out of the Hummer and just turned and walked back inside the lab. Eric walked beside Horatio to make sure he was ok and once they entered the building, Horatio had a good idea where he would find his wife.
As he stood outside the ballistics lab, he could hear the gunfire from inside. She's definitely upset. Slowly he entered the lab and walked to the door of the firing range, just watching as Calleigh unloaded an entire magazine at the target.
The shooting stopped momentarily, giving Horatio an opportunity to say,
"Calleigh, I'm sorry."
Calleigh never turned around to look at him as her anger was verbalized,
"Horatio, you say you care for me and our baby, but then you go off and do things to put yourself in jeopardy without any regard for me or our child. I could have made it if Eric had just waited a few minutes. I'm going to have to work through the morning sickness; you don't need to cover for me."
Horatio hung his head and softly said, "I care about you and our baby more than anything Sweetheart. Please don't ever doubt that."
"Well, I have news for you mister; I need to know that you're going to be here for me and our child, not chasing after criminals when you don't have to. You are going to have to realize that other people are fully capable of…." She stopped short after turning and facing him, seeing his dirty suit and shirt, his hair disheveled.
"Horatio…what happened?" she blurted as she quickly ran to him.
He looked as if he could pass out at any time and she motioned for him to sit down on the stool at the counter and she sat down on another in front of him.
"I'm ok Calleigh. You're right; I have no business out in the field in my condition." He reached out and gently cupped her face. "I'm sorry for making you think I don't care…you…you and our baby are the best things that have ever happened to me."
Calleigh began softly crying and Horatio stood and pulled her up close and just held her.
"I…I know you think I'm always strong, but I get so scared sometimes that something will happen to you…I need you Horatio."
Horatio placed his forehead on hers and answered, "I'm glad you do…because I need you Calleigh."
A/N: Was able to finish another as we pack! Have a good week everyone!