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With Her

Summary:
Quil and Claire are married. When Claire becomes pregnant, what new difficulties will they face? In the series For Her. Sequel to Protect Her, Love Her, Hold Her, Keep Her, and From Her. In that order... I think.


Notes:
Well, read the others first. I don't own this. By the way, sorry for the wait, but you took FOREVER with the reviews. thank pinkpoop/ alreadyinarithmancy and equuslover22 that this is posted at all. Love you guys!


5. Chapter 5

Rating 5/5   Word Count 532   Review this Chapter

The doctor was half concerned and half utterly bewildered. A second ago he’d seen a terrified husband and a mature, confident woman. Now it was a strong man and a girl too afraid to look up from his chest.

“Claire, honey, are you all right?” I whispered. “Can I tell him?”

“Yeah.”

I knew then that she was truly afraid, that this had affected her, brought back the memories I’d tried so hard to dispel forever. I could hear the voice I loved and hated, her familiar beloved tone, only decreased to next to nothing, a murmur, a whisper, a shadow, a dream.

“Doctor…”

“Williams,” he answered.

“Dr. Williams, Claire… when… God, this is hard to say. When Claire was between the ages of about five and nine, she was physically and sexually abused by her father. I think that’s probably the cause of the damage. She had two broken ribs when I… when her aunt, a family friend of mine, found her. I don’t know that much, and I don’t expect Claire’s going to talk about it, but I know it was bad.”

There was a moment as the man struggled to find words. I knew the feeling, when there’s something so terrible you don’t even know what to say. Fortunately, at the moment I’d discovered it, I’d had something convenient to rip into little pieces.

“Oh. Well… I’m sorry… yes, that would explain the damage. Well, I guess that concludes this check-up. I’ll need you back in two weeks. All right?”

I was shocked at his nonchalant response. It wasn’t indifference, obviously, rather awkwardness, but it still seemed misplaced. “Okay.”

I picked Claire up, holding her by the waist and one hand so she could stay facing into my shoulder. I knew she wanted me to let her stay close to me, where she felt safe.

I wouldn’t deny her that, or anything else, really.

I stroked her hair, and she turned away, toward the doctor. “I’m sorry,” she said. “I was out of line… it just shocked me.”

I almost felt rage. The doctor, however, mirrored my thoughts. “There’s nothing to be sorry for. I need to speak to the nurse about the test results. I’ll have the information and a course of treatment compiled next week.”

He’d recovered the professional composure, as had Claire. The only sign of her earlier outburst was the force with which she clung to my hand.

I signed the insurance forms blankly. The doctor returned to the room as another woman waddled in. The older lady who’d spoken to me before watched us leave, and she smiled.

If only she knew how very little I had to smile about at the moment… no, I had plenty. I had Claire, and she would probably be fine… no, she would be, she would be. If I had to walk through hell itself, she would be. Nothing was worth risking her life. She would be fine.

She didn’t release my hand, so I stayed right there, sheltering her. She was safe now. Everything would be fine… right?