“Are you okay?” Seamus asked as he knocked on the bathroom door in the middle of the night about a week later. Though he was relieved that his mum had said Noelle would be okay with much rest, he was still incredibly worried. All she did most of the time was throw up. Even though he hadn't asked if he could come in, he opened the door to the bathroom and crouched down next to her.
“I feel sick,” she groaned, resting her head into his chest. He lovingly rubbed circles on her back.
“I wish you'd just take that damned pregnancy test you had me buy for you last week.”
“When you were asleep and I first came in here for my hourly puking.”
“We're going to have a baby.” Her face brightened when she said those words and he enveloped her in a warm embrace. She moved her face so that their lips crashed together passionately, their fingers tangling in each others' hair. When she suddenly pulled away from him, he turned the other way. The sounds of her vomiting was enough; he didn't need to watch her as well.
“Just go back to bed,” she said. “I have a feeling that I'll be here for a while.”
“I can't leave you here feeling like this.”
“I'm going to be feeling like this for months. Just go to sleep; I'll be there in a bit.”
“I'm staying right here. I put you in this position and I'm going to try and make you feel better.” He sat on the uncomfortable edge of the bathtub as she tried to get the rest of the vomit out of her system. When the feeling of being completely useless settled in, he got on his knees next to her and tried to comfort her.
“You okay?” he asked.
“I think so; I'm just going to brush my teeth and I'll be right there. Just go on to bed. I can handle this.”
“Okay.” He kissed her cheek softly and headed back to their bedroom.
Once he got into the comfortable bedroom, he opened his sock drawer and fumbled around inside it. He felt the tiny loop of a ring and knew that he had come across what he was looking for: his grandmother's engagement ring. When he had asked his mum to come examine Noelle about two weeks prior, he'd asked that she bring that particular family heirloom.
“Were you looking for a certain pair of socks?” Noelle said, her voice a bit scratchy, when she came back from the bathroom. He shook his head and slipped the ring into his pocket swiftly so that she wouldn't see. When he turned around, she had already crawled into bed.
“Are you feeling better?” he asked once he had gotten into bed with her. He held her to him tightly as she kissed his lips softly. Her mouth lingered on his for a few moments before she pulled away from him completely. He smiled as he took the ring out of his pocket.
“What would you say if I asked you to marry me?”
“I would say 'yes',” she said, tears forming in her eyes.
“Do you have to cry all the time?”
“I can't help it; this is a new thing for me.”
“Being happy with someone.”
“Damn it, don't cry more.”
“Can you hold it in long enough for me to give you your ring?”
“If you can tell me something: are you only asking me to marry you because I'm having your baby?”
“No. I had asked my mum to bring me the ring before you being pregnant was even a possibility.”
“Then you can show me the ring.”
He slid the antique diamond ring on her delicate finger carefully and tried to ignore the warm, salty tears falling onto his skin. Gently, he touched her face, allowing more tears of hers to pour onto his hand and arm. She kissed him tenderly before she buried her face into his neck. He kissed her hair softly as he fell asleep, Noelle safely enveloped in his embrace.
“What are you making?”
“A breakfast casserole that my mum used to make us.”
“What's in it?”
“Oh, not much. Just some eggs, sausage, the crust of it is pancakes. I added some strawberries; it's a shame to waste them.”
“That sounds...lovely.” Seamus had to keep himself from cringing. It sounded fine until she said 'pancakes' and 'strawberries'. That turned him off what could have been a delicious breakfast. He plastered a smile on his face as he stood behind her while she stirred the mixture together. Wrapping his arms around her three-month pregnant belly, he kissed her neck. He could feel the muscles in her face move as she grinned.
“It probably sounds disgusting to you. At least I didn't tell you that I put peanut butter in it instead of maple syrup.”
“I think I've lost my appetite.”
“It's okay; I'll just have oatmeal or something.”
He walked silently over to the kitchen table and picked up the newspaper. Though the news was boring lately, it was a habitual thing to read each inch of the paper. He'd picked this up from his father. There was nothing wrong with it, it was just sometimes a waste of time. When nothing was happening, it was a waste of time to read through the paper from start to finish.
“Here's your oatmeal,” she said as she placed a bowl on the table in front of him and sat down with the casserole dish of random foods in front of her.
“Thank you, honey.”
The way she was looking at him confused him. She looked astonished at the term of endearment that had been used toward her. Gingerly, she put her spoon down and observed him, her blue eyes full of wonder. He raised his eyebrow as though to tell her that she should get used to this; he cared about her more than anything and would make sure that she knew it.
“Do you not want to be called that?” he asked, afraid that he had taken her look of shock the wrong way.
“No, I actually kind of like it.”
They each ate their breakfasts quietly for a while, stealing occasional glances and grins. Noelle managed to polish off the whole casserole dish of peanut butter, eggs, and only Merlin knew what else she put in there. She looked happy, though, and that was all that mattered to Seamus at that particular moment.
“We're going to have a baby,” Noelle said.
When he looked up from his bowl of oatmeal, he couldn't help but smile. Noelle was sitting contently at her place at the table with her hands on her swollen stomach. A grin that reached her eyes adorned her face as she talked to Seamus, not minding the fact that he wasn't listening but rather watching her. She looked up at him, the smile still remaining as she tucked her straight, red hair behind her ears.
“I'm going to have a baby.”
“Yes you are.”
At that moment, she burst into tears and Seamus wasn't sure what kind they were: tears of joy or tears of sadness. He had a feeling that she was beginning to get hormonal but chose not to say anything. He had six more months to make comments about her hormones.
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