10 Days Ch. 03byStephenEMeyer©
Sean dosed fitfully. A steady stream of nurses and doctors had come and gone through the day as he started his first course of treatment, leaving him nauseous. Katie had visited him at the end of her shift. There was little time to say anything when they were disturbed by one of the duty nurses. Katie had promised to visit before her shift started.
Katie was suddenly and uncharacteristically nervous. She had moved one of the two chairs in the room to the side of the bed.
"So, are we going to talk about what happened last night?"
"I think that last night spoke for itself."
Sean wheezed a laugh. Katie watched him carefully. It was the nurse in her and she was with her lover. That thought sent a shiver running down her spine. Sean Danaher was her lover. That she was sure of.
"We had sex. I got that. What I don't get is why."
"I know that I'm not Mary Brenna." Sean stared at her for several seconds.
"You didn't want me, remember," Sean said softly. He was fighting for breath.
"I was a fool." The truth was Mary Brenna had asked her not to date him. It had caused fractures between the O'Rourke sisters. Never the less Katie had ignored the turmoil of her own feelings and stepped back for her sister's happiness.
"That you were."
"We are both different now," said Katie.
"Are we that different?"
"Last night would never have happened if I was still the girl you took to graduation." Sean suddenly went pale. Instinct took over as Katie reached for the sick pan lying under the bed. She held her hand gently on his back as he retched.
Katie wanted to weep. She couldn't lie to him and by telling him that it was ok. He was just a patient.
"It's the after effects on the treatment."
Sean fell back on the bed. Katie took a cloth and dried his forehead. He was running a slight temperature.
"I keep asking why me?"
"It's simple. When I'm with you, I'm hating the time when I have to leave and when you're gone I'm wanting you to walk into the room." Katie could see that he was thinking about each word. "I don't know if I can call it love but I want to be with you all the time. I think of you when I wake and you're the last thing in my mind at day's end."
"If it is love then I like this feeling. I like it very much."
Sean appeared exhausted by still reached out for her hand.
"That's OK then." His eyes closed slowly.
Only when she knew that he was comfortable did Katie finally step out of his room.
Katie continued to visit Sean. Her shift pattern changed letting her visit through the afternoon. Several times she had sat in silence at his bedside. During the second week of his treatment Sean developed a chest infection. It quickly progressed into pneumonia.
It was whilst Sean was being treated for pneumonia that Katie finally visited her doctor. A week later Katie sat in the doctor's office. She was a bag of nerves as she waited for the results. She had missed her period and hope rather than fear had brought her to seek advice.
"The test came back positive. You are with child." Catching her friend's reserved reaction Dr Theresa Carlen started to wonder. "Does the father know?"
Katie shook her head.
Katie looked up suddenly. "Sean's on Joseph Ward."
Carlen's eyes opened in shock.
"Oh Merciful Heaven; I'd heard that you had a friend here, I didn't think to ask how good a friend." The hospital was a breeding ground for rumour. The unspoken words fell into the chasm between them.
"You're a healthy woman so I see no problems. Still, you should see out the first three months of pregnancy before you tell anyone. Sean being the one exception, I suppose."
"Damn you, you are going to be a mother. Bill and I are so envious."
Katie smiled. "How is it going between you two?"
"The sex is phenomenal but..." Theresa let the unfinished sentence hang in the air.
"Sean and I have only been together the one time."
Theresa looked at her friend.
"So the baby wasn't planned?"
"She was planned."
"So, it's a girl?"
"O'Rourke's only have girls."
"If I remember the O'Rourke also have a history of twins."
Sean heard voices in the fog of his mind. He stirred slowly after a sudden flash of light shocked his mind when he first opened his eyes.
"Ma, Sean's awake." Siobhan, Katie's older sister slowly came into his focus. She was sat by the side of his bed. He couldn't see Mary O'Rourke. Sean tried to speak. His throat burned fiercely.
"Go and tell Katie," said Mary. Siobhan appeared reluctant. "Sean will still be here when you get back."
Siobhan leaned closer. He felt her lips as they touched his cheek. He wasn't surprised when her kiss felt so unlike Katie's.
He opened his eyes to see a smile on Katie's face.
"Hello," Katie laughed as relief poured through her. "You gave us a little bit of a worry back there."
"I gave myself one too," he answered.
"I'll leave the two of you alone," announced Mary O'Rourke.
"No Ma, stay. You may as well hear what I have to tell Sean."
Worry filled Sean's head.
"No," Katie suddenly reeled back as she saw the worry in his eyes. "It's not bad news; well, at least I don't think it is."
"You're going to be a Da."
He saw the pleading look in her eyes.
"Ma, do we have you blessing?" asked Sean. Katie's face exploded with a wide smile. Tears welled in her eyes.
"I will be the best mother."
"You already are," said Mary. "You just never had children."
"Your grandmother's engagement ring..." Katie lifted up her hand.
"I couldn't shame Ma or Dada."
Katie saw a cloud fall over his eyes.
"I'll take it off if..."
"I'll not be asking you to do that. But..." He inhaled. Katie suddenly grew worried. "You had better learn to talk to me before you do things."
Katie shook her head. "No chance. If the mood takes me then I'll be making no promises."
"Mauvreen is what you are," cried Mary O'Rourke.
Sean looked at Katie when she didn't slow as they neared his cottage. He had been released from the hospital less than an hour earlier.
"I live here."
"You are not staying there," Katie announced.
"Stop the car." Katie pressed the accelerator.
"I said STOP THE CAR." Katie let the Ford Escort to the side of the road.
"What did I tell you about making decisions that involve me?"
"Sean, the decision is made and for very good reason."
"That's as maybe but you are missing the point." Sean realised that they were having their first lover's fight. "I'm not saying its wrong but talk to me about it."
"You're being a stubborn arse."
"Pot... Kettle... Black... Calling...The..."
"The hell with you, Sean Danaher."
"The hell with you too!" He climbed out of the passenger seat and slammed the door closed.
"Where do you think that you are going?"
"Well you'll be sleeping on the floor as you bed is over at the pub."
He turned and looked back. Katie was now out of the car.
"Mairaid will be able to look in on you when I'm working."
"So what was so hard about telling me that you could do it at the hospital?"
Katie shriek. "You are so infuriating Sean Danaher."
"But you still love me."
"That may be changing soon." He heard the doubt in her voice.
Katie slowly opened the door and entered the bedroom. Sean had been standing by the window. He was dressed in a pair of blue pyjama. He was still pale but he was now gaining weight and there were signs that his hair was growing back.
"Wow," Sean said breathlessly, bringing her mind back to the now. "You are even more beautiful than I remember."
"I feel pregnant and fat."
"You're bloody lovely, Mrs Danaher."
The wedding had been a simple affair at the registry office in Cork. Mary and Mahraid were they only one's present.
A single tear fell down her cheek as her fingers went to the row of button at the front of her nightdress.
"Let me." He took the first button in his finger. As the cloth at her neck parted, revealing the soft freckled skin at her throat, he learned forward and kissed the nape of her neck. A soft purr rumbled deep inside her.
"No," he answered before tenderly kissing her throat.
He popped the next button to reveal the delicate slope of her breasts. Katie put her hand on his shoulder to steady herself.
"They ran out of breasts when it was my turn." She was conscious that she was not as well endowed as her mother or her sisters.
"Shush now, whilst I admire the view." A little girlish giggles escaped.
Sean cupped her left breast and ran his thumb across the sheer cotton until he felt the tiny bud of her nipple. Dipping his head he ran his tongue over her erect nipple. Katie let out a cry as he nipped it between his teeth.
Sean felt her hand moved down from his shoulder. It traced the contours of his chest before sliding down across his stomach.
"You don't play fair." Katie plunged her hand into the waistband of his pyjamas. He took hold of his hardening cock. His cock was burning from her touch as she wrapped her fingers around him as she held him.
"I'm not playing," growled Sean. He reached up and slipped the nightdress off her shoulder.
"Then fuck me now Sean Danaher, make me yours forever."
"You are Mrs Danaher forever."
Sean kissed Katie and then watched her climbed out of the passenger seat. She turned and leaned back inside the car.
"I'll be waiting for you."
Katie's mother had visited the cottage the previous morning to tell them both that Mary Brenna was staying with her and was asking to meet with Sean and Katie.
"How's are my grand babies?" sang Mary.
"They're sleeping Ma," Katie answered. "I fed them before we came over."
Mary understood her daughter all too well. Colleen and Niahm would sleep for a couple of hours whilst they talked.
"Oh my gosh, they're beautiful." Katie looked up at hearing Mary Brenna's voice.
"They are definite O'Rourkes."
"They have Danaher eyes," Katie said in a whisper.
"I'll put them down in the parlour. We can go into the kitchen." Katie had only brought the babies because her mother had pressured her to.
Mary Brenna was sitting at the kitchen table whilst Mary busied herself making a fresh pot of tea. Katie took her usual place at the table and they were soon joined by their mother.
Katie glanced at her mother. Mary's eyes were held steady on her. Her mother and Mary Brenna had made their peace. This was between Katie and her sister. It would have included Sean if Mary had had her way. Sean had chosen a time when he would be working.
"He's a good man," Katie answered finally.
"Ma tells me that the cancer is clear."
Katie looked up. Mary gave her daughter a simple shrug of the shoulder.
"The doctors are pleased with his recovery." Katie knew from her training and experience that medicine was never a clear cut as black and white. Sean would always be at risk.
"Do you think that he will ever forgive me?"
A single tear rolled down Mary Brenna's cheek as she made her way through the village grave yard. Coming upon a bench she turned to walk along the cleared path. A light flurry of snow over night had blanketed the ground white. The wheels of the pram cut dark lines into the snow.
The grave she sought out was marked by a small weeping willow.
"Merry Christmas, Dada," said Mary Brenna. "Colleen Mary's here to see you. She's a real beauty, Dada. She is going to be a heart breaker when she's all grown. I'll bring Brendan when I next visit."
Mary Brenna cradled Colleen in her arms as she wept silently. She had left Brendan with her father whilst visiting.
"I made a right mess of things, Dada." The tears rolled down her face.
"I'm sorry but I have to go and make things right with Sean now. I won't leave it so long before I come back. I promise." Mary Brenna turned and walked along the row of headstones to where her mother and Katie were waiting.
"I'll talk with Sean but I'm not making any promises."
Mary Brenna nodded.
Katie looked at Sean's sleeping form. She was unaware how long she had been standing there, just watching him. He was comfortable in the armchair in the parlour, the soft glow from the wood fire in the grate filling the cottage with warmth.
"I'm just resting my eyes." Katie jumped at the sound of his voice.
"Sean Danaher, what have I told you about making me jump like that?" Sean reached forward and took her hand. Katie slid on to his lap.
"How did it go?" He felt Katie stiffen. Katie had looked into his eyes before answering.
"We all went to see Dada." Sean remained silent. Katie took it to mean continue.
"Mary Brenna has a son, Brendan Patrick Mahoney. She is going to bring him next time she visits." Katie saw the fire reflected in his eyes. She suspected that her Ma already knew the truth but wasn't intending to tell Sean. She would confront her Ma sometime in the near future.
"She was pregnant when she ran away."
"She didn't need to run away," he said bitterly.
"Sometimes it's easier not having to face the harsh truth," admitted Katie.
"She still has to face the truth. It doesn't just vanish." Katie heard the hardness in his voice.
"She asked if she could see you, to make thing right with you; right with us."
"Has she made things right with you?"
"Things will never be the same between us but she is still my sister." Katie knew that her relationship with Sean and Colleen had made it impossible to return to how things were.
Sean was quiet.
"Bring her here when she next visits."
Katie leaned into his arms and laid her head on his chest. There were times when Sean just knew when she needed to be held and when she needed to be left alone. Then there were times that she would just look at him with lust filled eyes. Katie started to free his cock. Sean felt the softness of her thighs above her stockings as he pushed his hand beneath the hem of her skirt. His fingers hooked the elastic in her knickers.
"Your two girls asked me for a baby brother for Christmas."
"Do I have to remind you about making decisions without talking it over first?"
"Shut up and give me our son."
"That I am; but only with you my husband, my lover, my best friend and my soul mate."