The Second Season

Parental Advisory Rating: L, AC

Break out those V-Chips, everyone!


Created, Produced, Directed and Written:

Fanatic and TNovan


Episode Twelve: Two Are Better Than One

The sound of Kels crying out in her sleep wakes me immediately.

"No!" She thrashes around in the bed. I snap on the lamp and turn to pull her into my arms. She fights me, clawing at my neck and face. I feel one of her nails sink into my skin and tear it, but I don’t care. She needs me. God, she hasn’t had a bad dream in weeks.

I know she had a rough session with Dr. Sherwin today, but I didn’t realize how bad it was. She was quiet and moody at dinner earlier tonight, but she was clearly not in the mood to talk about it. Maybe I should have forced her to do so.

"Kels, baby, it’s Harper. I got you," I whisper in her ear, trying to keep my voice calm so I don’t further frighten her. "You’re safe. It’s all over. You’re home safe with me." I try to comfort her, rocking her gently, holding her close. She grips my jersey tightly, whimpering. She’s breaking my heart. "Come on baby, wake up. You’re safe."

"I killed him, Harper." She cries into my chest, holding onto me for dear life.

"Shh, chér. Everything’s okay."

She shakes her head against me. "No, it’s not. Do you know why I killed him?"

How do I answer a question like that? So I opt for remaining silent. Instead, I nuzzle her hair and murmur nonsense words.

"He told me he killed you." She gasps for air as if struck, then buries her head back in against my neck. "He told me he cut your throat. I thought you were dead."

Oh God, tell me I haven’t done this to her. I couldn’t live with that. "Kels…"

"I wanted revenge, Harper. I wanted him dead for what I thought he had done. My baby has a murderer for a mother." Her sobs are almost uncontrollable now.

"Kels, honey…oh darlin’…" Shit! "You are not a murderer, sweetheart. You got out of there alive. You came back to me. I would have given anything for you to come back to me, Kels. I would have done anything. And I am so grateful for you walking out of there." I press my lips to her temple, wishing I could take her pain away.

"But, what I did, Harper," she protests.

"The only thing you did was come home to me." I think I’m in way over my head. "Honey, I’m gonna call Dr. Sherwin. I really think you need to talk to her, okay?" I don’t know if it’s better to acknowledge that she killed the rat bastard – because I sure am glad she did – or if I should minimize what happened. I don’t want to hurt Kels anymore.

She nods against my skin, but I have to move away from her to get to the phone. I try to disengage, but she clutches at me. It takes me a few minutes to calm her down so I can slip out of bed and get to the phone.

I’m shocked when the doc actually picks up her own phone, but with what she charges per hour she should. "Doc, I’m awful sorry to wake you, but it’s Harper Kingsley. Kels is having a real rough night. I think she needs to talk to you."

"Can you put her on, Harper?"

I look back at Kels, who is still crying, curled up into a ball. "No, I don’t think so. Can I bring her to you? I know it’s late and all, but … God, I’m really at a loss here."

"I’ll come to you. I doubt if you could coax her outside at this point." I hear her move about on her bed, turning on a light, shoving back the covers. "I’ll be there in twenty minutes. Stay with her and try to keep her calm."

"All right." I hang up the phone and return to Little Roo. "Chér, the doctor is on her way." I reach out and stroke her arms. "Kels … Little Roo … please, come on, darlin’." I wrap myself around her slowly so as not to frighten her more than she already is.

Kels is trembling and I can hear her apologizing over and over again. When I finally hear her words clearly, my heart breaks. She’s apologizing to our baby.

I want to cry with her, but instead I take a deep breath and tighten my hold on her. "It’s okay, darlin’. I promise it is."


* * *


I’m sitting on the floor outside the bedroom, head back against the wall, eyes closed, praying and waiting. I should be sitting in the living room, relaxing on the couch, but I can’t bear to be that far away from Kels. Even though the door is closed. Dr. Sherwin has been with Kels for almost two hours. It’s quiet now but I’ve heard her crying in there and it’s killing me to sit here and listen.

Finally, the door opens and Dr. Sherwin steps out, closing the door behind her. I stare at it, wishing I had X-ray vision. It’s taking all my willpower to not run over the psychiatrist and go to my gal.

"I gave her something to help her sleep," she says.

"The baby …"

She holds up her hands to stall my objection. "It’s perfectly safe for the baby, but Kelsey needed to rest. Is there some place we can talk? Someplace you might be more comfortable?"

I give an embarrassed shrug. "Absolutely. Would you like some coffee?" I push myself up and begin leading her through the apartment.

She nods, shouldering her bag. "That’d be great, thanks."

Once seated in the kitchen, I merely stare at my coffee, watching the swirl of the milk as I stir it.

"It’s been very hard on her," Sherwin finally says.

"I know." For this insightful analysis the good doctor gets paid over two hundred dollars an hour.

"You’ve been a great help to her. A supportive partner is a Godsend after something like she suffered."

I shrug, not wanting praise but inordinately relieved to hear I’ve been of help. "I love her. I didn’t know what else to do. I still don’t."

"I have her permission to tell you a few things she’s been afraid to tell you. Would you like to hear them?"


"Yes." I look up at her. "Please."

"It’s not pleasant by any means. If, after we talk tonight, you find yourself having trouble dealing with it, please come see me. The support you’ve given Kelsey is something she can’t afford to lose." Dr. Sherwin gives me a level stare, evaluating whether I can handle this or not.

"Never. Especially not now with our baby coming."

She smiles gently at me. "That was a very brave move on your part. Coincidentally, it was also one of the best things you could have given Kelsey. This baby is what’s keeping her focused on getting better."

"Like I said, I love her. I would never deny her anything."

"I can tell. So," she takes a deep breath and a sip of her coffee, "let me tell you what happened."


* * *


After Dr. Sherwin leaves, I promptly go to the bathroom and throw up. Listening to the things my Little Roo went through at the hand of that sick son of a bitch turned my stomach. I’m surprised I held it down until she left; it certainly wasn’t easy.

I hang my toothbrush back up and head into our bedroom. Kam’s head comes up from his spot at the foot of the bed where he has been keeping vigil over Kels. I motion for him to get off, which he does immediately. He makes his way over to his doggie bed in the corner where he curls into a tight ball, never once taking his gaze off Kelsey. Good, doggie.

When I climb under the covers, Kels is immediately in my arms despite the fact she is sound asleep. Glancing at the clock, I see I only have an hour before I have to get up and get ready for work. It’s been a rough night. I hope to hell I have a better day at work. I kiss the top of Kels head and close my eyes. "Love you, Little Roo." My hand comes to rest over our baby. "You too, little one."


* * *


Harper is in rare form this morning. Cracking jokes and being her normal, ornery self while we get ready for work. She doesn’t say a word about what happened last night. Not a word about the things the doctor told her.

As we’re about to head out the door, Harper sweeps me up in her arms, almost crushing me to her chest. "I love you, Kels. Nothing and no one can ever change that. I don’t give a rat’s ass about the past and our future is anything we want to make it. Got it?"

I smile and rub my thumb over her lower lip. "I got it. And you owe me a buck."

"For ass?" she asks, incredulous.

"Two, now."

"Ass is not a swear word. It’s a part of the anatomy. And it’s an animal."

"Three," I amend. "You were not referring to a donkey, Harper Lee Kingsley."

"Yes, I was. Rats are known to have pet donkeys. You know, out in the wild."

"Three dollars," I repeat. "I should charge you an extra two dollars for such a pathetic attempt at justifying your swearing."

She growls at me, but it doesn’t work. Like she could intimidate me at this point. She talks to my stomach on a daily basis. "You do realize you’re bankrupting me, don’t you?"

I kiss her chin. "It’s going to a good cause, sweetheart."

"Our kid is gonna be able to afford Harvard, undergrad and med school."

"I didn’t know we were having a doctor. When did this get decided?"

"Well, we have too many damn lawyers in the family already." She grimaces. "Shit, I owe you four now."

"Actually, five."

It hits her what she just said. "I may have to take a vow of silence, Kels."

"Well, at long as that’s the only thing you stop doing with your mouth." I snuggle closer in her arms.

She laughs, her whole body shaking as she holds me. "Darlin’, I insist you put a dollar in for that comment. Even the baby could understand what you meant."


* * *


I am sitting in my office, my mind wandering as it is wont to do lately. I’m slowly becoming a morning person like my partner. Harper and I have both been walking Kam in the Park before we leave for work. It’s becoming my favorite time of the day. We relax and play with Kam, enjoying the outdoors. And we talk. Lately it’s been focused around the baby and our upcoming wedding. We need to decide on the date for the ceremony before I really start showing. I’m already sweating the Peabody Awards ceremony. I just know that damn dress isn’t going to fit now.

My intercom buzzes and Brian pipes up. "Dr. Solomon’s office is on line two for you, boss."

"Thanks, Brian." I know what this call is about and I grin as I pick up the phone. "Good morning, doctor."

"Good morning, Kelsey. I wanted to call and let you know I referred you to Dr. Kevin McGuire. He’s the absolute best Ob in the business: top of the line, young, energetic and knows all the newest techniques. I really think you’ll like him."

"Great. When can I see him?"

"Just call his office and set it up. I didn’t want to make the appointment because I didn’t know how full your schedule was."

"For my baby, I’d clear my schedule one way or another."

I hear her chuckle. "That’s my girl. Congratulations to you again, Kelsey. Give my best to Harper."

"I will. Thanks for everything, Dr. Solomon."

"My pleasure. You make sure you keep us updated. We like to know the outcome of our work here."

"I will."

As soon as I hang up, I pull out my day planner and beep my better half via the computer. This system is sure a fun way to communicate.

KINGSLEY: You rang? <g>

STANTON: Glad I caught you. Do you have a minute?

KINGSLEY: For you, always. What’s up?

STANTON: I’m about the call the Ob and make an appointment. What’s your best day?

KINGSLEY: Thursday. I’m free most of the afternoon.

STANTON: Oh good. Thursday it is, I hope. I’ll let you know.

KINGLSEY: Let me know if there’s anything I can do for you, chér. <GBEG>

Of course, I know what she means by that. So now I get to tease her a bit.

STANTON: Speaking of that, I want to discuss something with you.

KINGSLEY: Really? What? Is everything all right?



I watch the screen and reach for the phone.

KINGSLEY: Little Roo?

I punch in the number of the new doctor’s office. The line starts ringing.


A pleasant voice answers the phone, "McGuire, Nelson and Adams."

KINGSLEY: Don’t make me come over there!

I hold back the chuckle. "Hi, I was referred by Dr. Solomon. I need to make an appointment with Dr. McGuire for my first pregnancy exam?"

"Okay. Your name?"

"Kelsey Stanton." Hmmm wonder how Tabloid would feel about me taking Kingsley as my last name after the wedding?

KINGSLEY: I mean it woman! You’re in big trouble if you make me come over there.

Yeah, yeah, Tabloid. Save it for someone who will buy it.

"How far along are you, Mrs. Stanton."

"It’s Ms. Stanton and about seven weeks."

"Okay. How’s Wednesday?"

"I’m booked solid on Wednesday. Do you have anything on Thursday afternoon?"

"Actually, yes. How’s two-thirty?"

My door bangs open on cue. I look at her and smile innocently. "Hi, Hon. How’s Thursday at two thirty?"


* * *


The scripting meeting couldn’t be more boring if they had called Al Gore in to give a speech. Even with his new Alpha Male persona. This is the one part of my job that I hate.

I wonder what Harper is doing. Last time I saw her she was headed for the editing bays. She didn’t look happy. She’s been having a lot of trouble with one of the editors here on staff. I hope he is carrying plenty of long term disability insurance. I have a feeling I’m going to be doing some new voiceover work later in the day.

Larry isn’t here because he’s on assignment at the White House this week, so they’re splitting anchor time up between Sam and Bruce. Sam seems pretty pleased to be getting more face time. Bruce is pissed that he didn’t get the desk alone.

Surprisingly, he hasn’t even looked at me this morning. I noticed he had a very pained look on his face when he crossed his legs. Wonder if someone finally kicked him where it counts. Of course, the only person I know around here who’s crazy enough to do that is my girl, but I would have heard about it from Brian if she did it.

I feel a nudge to my right arm and look over at Kendra. I notice that everyone else is getting up from the conference table. Oops, missed the end of the meeting. Thank God.

"My, my, are we preoccupied with something?" She gives me a huge smile with just a hint of leer.

"No. Well, not really. I’m just wondering who has put Harper in such a pissy mood today. I saw her storming into the editing bay a little bit ago."

"My guess would be Silverman then. None of the producers like his work." She takes a drink of water. "She does have a temper, doesn’t she?"

"Oh yeah. That she does. Harper does not suffer fools gladly. But, luckily, she’s good about killing the culprit and not the messenger." It’s true. She is fair.

"Congratulation on the Peabody, by the way."

I sigh, nodding, thinking back to Omaha. "Thanks. That was a spooky one."

Kendra leans forward, in her interviewing posture. "How big was the gun that was shoved in your face?"

I laugh and hold my hands far enough apart to hold a grapefruit. "I don’t know about the gun, but the barrel was about that big. I thought for sure that was it." I smile when I remember it now, but I wasn’t smiling then. "The next thing I know, I can’t see and I’m on the ground with Harper covering me, telling me to hold still."

She’s lost interest in the story and grabs my hand, pulling it closer for inspection. "Good Lord, woman! Where did that come from?"

I feel a huge smile overtake my face, remembering Harper’s proposal. "The Easter Bunny."


Silly question. "Looked like her. Sure kissed like her. I hope it was her."

"You two set a date yet?"

"No," I sigh, getting up and collecting my notes. "I’m having a little trouble nailing her down on that one. I know we’ll go back to New Orleans for the ceremony, to be with our family. But when? I have no idea." I give her a grin. "But I’ll get it out of her one way or another. I have ways."

Kendra actually blushes. "Well, congratulations again. You’re having a wonderful month, aren’t you?"

"You have no idea."


* * *


I don’t know why these exam rooms make me so uncomfortable, but they do. Kels is lying on the table in a hospital gown that opens in the front. That’s the first thing that makes me uncomfortable. I don’t like sharing. She’s prepared for the exam she’s about to receive, although she not in the stirrups yet, thank God. Okay, that’s the second thing. I think the exam table looks like a medieval torture apparatus. And my girl is on it. Don’t like that at all.

I’m seated on a stool next to Kels. To keep myself calm, I hold one of her hands in mine, gently massaging it. She tugs on it, bringing my attention to her.

"What’s wrong, Harper?"

"Nothing’s wrong, sweetheart. These rooms make me a little sick at my stomach, that’s all." Maybe it’s the smell of all the antiseptic. Yeah, that must be it.

"Ooo, Tabloid, don’t say that loud enough for Baby Roo to hear you." She looks up at me with a smile, trying to snap me out of my mood.

"Sorry." I lean over and separate the folds of Kels’ hospital gown, placing my lips on her bare belly. "You didn’t hear that."

She swats at my head. "Come up here, you."

I sit back up, glad to make her laugh. "I was trying to be helpful."

"You were being silly."

I shrug. My right as a parent-to-be.

The door opens and an orderly enters. I wonder where Dr. McGuire is. We’ve been waiting almost fifteen minutes already. I suppose the kid will tell us what’s going on.

"Good afternoon, Ms. Stanton. I’m Dr. Kevin McGuire."

Oh, this had better be a joke. He can’t be more than twelve. My God, he’s barely been walking for a couple years and he can’t have hit puberty yet. I stare at his jaw. He doesn’t even shave, I bet.

There is no fucking way he’s gonna be Kels and my kid’s doctor. No way, no how.

Am I in some Doogie Howser alternative universe?

The little boy takes a seat on the other side of Kels. He looks up from his file and smiles at me. "You must be Harper Kingsley."

I nod, tightening my grip on Kels’ hand. How can I politely gather up my best gal and get out of here? I’m gonna kill Dr. Solomon too.

"Easy," Kels whispers loosening my grasp on her hand.

I look to Kels and then to the so-called doctor.

He leans back and spreads his hands, seeming to know I am about to break us out of here. "Okay, I know, I look young."

I snort. "You look twelve. No offense." I lie.

"None taken. Trust me, I’m a doctor." He laughs at the phrase, recognizing it for the pickup line that it is.

I am not amused. No comedians around my gal.

He composes himself. "Sorry. Look, I’m a doctor and I am thirty-three years old. I have the driver’s license to prove it too. All the men in my family have a real baby face. I assure you, though, that I graduated the top in my class at Harvard and am board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology. I’ve delivered hundreds of babies and I am fully qualified." He winks at Kels and looks at me.

I take a deep breath. Maybe he’ll be okay.

He must sense my giving in, because he gives the pitch that clinches it for me. "I assure you both that I have nothing but the best interests of this family and its newest member in mind."

Family. He recognizes that’s what we are. Maybe that’s why Dr. Solomon sent us to the kid. I look to Kels and give a nod. "Okay." I say finally. We’ll see how the first appointment goes. One wrong step, one look of confusion and we’re so out of here.

The tension in the room drops slightly and he comes back closer to Kelsey. "So, you want to have a baby, huh?"

Kels laughs a little. "Absolutely."

"Well, good, because your blood work told me you’re pregnant. Now let’s make sure."

He moves down to the end of the table and without breaking eye contact with either Kels or I, he positions her for the physical exam. "Kelsey, I need you to scoot down just a bit." She does so and he smiles at me. "There you go, that’s good. So how long have you two been trying for a baby?" He asks this as he begins his exam. I suspect it’s meant as distraction, but I am grateful for it.

"We got lucky the first time we tried. I went in for a IUI and got pregnant."

"You were fortunate. There’s normally only a twenty-five percent success rate with just one procedure." He finishes his exam and gently helps her legs out of the stirrups.

Okay, I might be able to like this guy. He’s friendly, supportive and he doesn’t gawk at my girl when he has he in a compromising situation.

Stripping off the latex gloves he trashes them and washes his hands in the sink. He makes a note in to chart. "You’re definitely pregnant." He grins retaking his seat. He looks at her file again. "Okay, so the biological father was a donor from your family, right, Harper?"

"Yes. One of my brothers but we don’t know which one." Okay, a bit of a stretch there, but that’s between me and the clinic.

"Good. I noticed we had a pretty complete medical history on your side. That’s good. However," he pauses and looks over at Kels, "on your side I see we’re not as lucky."

"No. I’m estranged from my parents and I don’t have a lot of that information."

"Okay. That’s not a huge problem and I like a challenge." He winks at her again.

Normally, I would kill someone for that, but I can tell he’s doing it to be friendly and keep Kels relaxed. So he lives. For now.

"Kelsey, you’re thirty-two and will be thirty-three by the time the baby arrives, right?"


"All right, now most pregnancies for women over thirty-five are considered high risk. Because you’re close to thirty-five and we have no medical history for your side of the family, I’m inclined to put you in a high risk category. I want to make sure we’re all ready when this baby comes."

Kels gives me a very nervous look. "It’s okay…" I whisper, hoping to God it is.

"Oh, yeah, Kelsey, it’s fine." He gives her shoulder a pat. "A higher risk notation in the chart doesn’t mean anything except that the hospital will be completely ready for you when you go into labor. I’m guessing this is going to be a very happy, healthy, easy pregnancy." He reaches over to a table and retrieves a small tape measurer. He measures Kels stomach in a couple different directions. "Having any early symptoms yet?"

"My breasts are really tender and the morning sickness is just…oh God…" Kels cringes. "And I’m always in the bathroom."

He nods, making a note in the chart. "Definitely pregnant. Harper, how are you handling the morning sickness, if you don’t mind my asking? I keep track of partners’ reactions to pregnancy as part of a study I’m doing."

"Well, I’m getting kinda tired of throwing up in the morning myself."

He leans against the counter and shakes his head at me. "You are involved, aren’t you? I’ve found that lesbian partners tend to make a stronger connection to their mate during the pregnancy. Going so far that they even feel a lot of the same things." He smirks. "I’m guessing you’re gonna hate the backaches."

I give Kels my sweetest look. "Sweetie, I love ya, but I can’t do back problems. Throwing up is a bitch as it is." I pause and shake my head. I pull out a dollar out of my wallet and hand it to her. "Sorry, babe."

She takes it from me but is at a loss for where to put it. She’s kinda out of pockets at this point. "That’s okay, I understand."

"I’m not even gonna ask about the dollar." Doogie … er … Dr. McGuire chuckles as he pulls a machine over next to Kels. "So would you like to have a look at your baby?"

"Yes!" Kels is quick with that answer and the smile on her face is priceless. He looks to me. "How bout you, Mom?"

"Mama," I correct without even thinking about it. "And you bet."

He turns on the device. "This is an ultrasound machine. It’s going to give us pictures of the baby. I’ll make sure you each get a couple of copies so you can show them off and put them in a baby book, if you’ve started one." He picks up a bottle of gel. "Kelsey, this procedure isn’t going to hurt you or the baby, but the gel is really cold."

He emphasizes the ‘really’ in his comment before he applies it to her stomach. It must be cold because she jumps a few inches off the table at first contact.

"What’s in that stuff? Liquid nitrogen?" She squirms a little.

"Could be. But never say I didn’t warn you. Now let’s see what we got here." He takes the wand in his hand and slowly begins a path over Kels’ stomach. He looks at a monitor which is displaying an area filled with little spots that look like a really bad weather report.

"Hmm," he murmurs. "Let’s start the grand tour." He moves the wand and points to a patch. "There’s the placenta. Looks like it’s properly positioned and receiving plenty of nutrients from Mom here." He moves the device again and points to another patch of cells. "And here’s the placenta."

That’s a damn big placenta. Where’s our kid?

"I should tell you that ordinarily two placentas can only mean one thing."

Oh my God.

"How do you two feel about twins?"

"Twins?" Kels’ eyes are the size of saucers when she looks to me.

"Yeah. Fraternal twins," he confirms.

"Let me understand," I manage to stammer, "are you asking how we feel about twins in the abstract or in the here and now? Perhaps meaning to imply that we’re having them."

He points to the monitor. "As in, here’s baby number one." He points to the first little spot. He moves his finger to the right just a bit. "And here’s baby number two."

"Holy shit!" I hand Kels another dollar. "You did good, baby. Real good." I lean over and give her a kiss, which she returns with a great amount of affection.

Doogie clears his throat interrupting us. "Doctor working here. Besides, you guys are already pregnant. No reason to keep trying."

I refrain from explaining biology to him. I’m too happy at the moment. I brush back Kels’ hair from her eyes. "We’re having twins, Little Roo. No wonder we’ve been throwing up so much."

"Oh yeah." Doogie confirms. "Kelsey, you’ll find that with twins everything will be more intense." He continues to scan and watch the monitor. "Okay, look at this." He removes a pointer from his pocket and points to a small spot on one baby and then the other. "See those little flutters? Those are your babies’ hearts beating. Looks like good, strong heartbeats from both of your little ones. Everything here looks really good. At this stage, you have two perfect babies."

"Of course we do." I steal another kiss. "Look at their mother."

He chuckles indulgently. "I’d say they’re pretty lucky to have you both." He prints out four pictures and hands them to Kels. "There you go. Enjoy those."

I watch as he cleans the gel off Kels’ belly and closes the gown. He retrieves the file from the nearby counter and writes down a few more notes. "If Kelsey wasn’t high risk before, she is now because all multiple pregnancies are considered high risk. Once again, that doesn’t mean you’re not going to have a healthy, happy pregnancy. It just means we will be extra-ready for the two new additions to your family." He becomes the most serious I’ve seen since he walked through the door. "Okay, Mom, here’s the deal. Twins are going to be a lot more taxing on your body. I’m going to put you on a special diet. I’m also going to want to see you more often than I would if you were only having one baby. Any problems there?"

"Absolutely not," Kels replies quickly, but then says, "Doctor, my job requires I travel a lot. Is that a problem?"

He sighs a bit. "No. But, if you can, you need to arrange your travel schedule so as to allow you to get plenty of rest. If you can’t do that, you may want to look at other options."

He closes the folder, tapping it against Kels’ leg. "Go ahead and get dressed. I’ll have my nurse get together some information for you and set up your next appointment. I’m also going to give you something for the morning sickness." He smiles at me. "I’ll make the scrip big enough so you can take them too, if you want."

With one last wink he leaves us alone. I like Doogie. I think we’ll keep him.


* * *


I think Harper may be on crack.

She has been fairly bouncing since we left the doctor’s office. If I’m Little Roo, she’s acting like Tigger right now. Not that I’d ever say that to her.

She finishes up her call to the office. "It’s official. We’re playing hookey."

"And what are we going to do?" I inquire, reaching out for her hand. If she keeps bouncing, I’m going to be sick.

"Celebrate! My God, baby, twins!" She picks me up and spins me around on the street, laughing. "I am so proud of you!"

I shake my head. I am in love with a strong three-year old. "Sweetheart, I don’t think I had much to do with it."

"Not much to do with it?" She rubs my belly. "You did it all!" She drops to her knees and starts talking to my stomach. "Well, you two had a little to do with it too."

"Harper," I whisper, turning twelve shades of red on the sidewalk. I glance at the few people who are looking at us strangely. "Sweetheart, we are in public."

She scowls and climbs to her feet. "Fine, fine. Let’s go home where we can celebrate in private." She leans close and whispers in my ear, her breath hot but still managing to send chills down my spine. "And I do mean celebrate."


* * *


Several hours later, we’re lying tangled together on the bed. If I ever had any doubts about how Harper feels about having children together, I don’t have them now. No one can fake this much happiness. I know. I used to try.

But not any longer.

I don’t know what I did right to have her in my life, but I’ll keep her.

She kisses my stomach where her head is resting. "I hope we didn’t jostle you two little guys around too much."

I laugh and her head bounces a couple times.

She lifts it up and stares at me. "Stop it. Be a good pillow," she chastises. "Where was I? Now, I want you two to be good and stop making your Mommy throw up all the time. It’s not very nice. And it makes your Mama very upset. And that’s never a good thing."

I have to agree. "It is never a good thing to tick off your Mama, that’s for sure."

"Mama!" Harper repeats, pushing herself up immediately. "We need to call Mama and Papa about the babies!" She leans down and whispers. "We’re about to call your Grandmere. She’s a bossy woman, but we love her." Stretching across my body, she grabs the phone off the nightstand.

I cop a feel.

"Hey!" she squeaks and rolls back, nearly dropping the phone. "Play fair!" She moves back to her prior position. "You really don’t want to start that type of fight with me right now." She punches in the automatic speed dial. "But, before we call your Grandmere, we’re going to call your uncle."

I wonder which one she means. Oh hell, I know. Of course it’s Robie. Who else could it be?

When he answers the phone, Harper begins singing. "Anything you can do, I can do better."

Kids. I have three of them.


* * *


"I really like the way this piece finally came together."

I smile at the strain behind the word 'finally' from Tabloid as she slips the tape into the machine. It sounds exactly like the tone I hear when I’ve been teasing her for longer than I should in other matters. Oh, don’t go there, Kels. It wouldn’t be good for someone to walk into this editing bay and find you pinning your producer against the wall and …

Arrgggh! Do not go there, Kels.

Think cold.

Ice cream. Cold showers. Blizzards. Your mother.

Okay, that did it. In fact, I think I have frostbite on my ass. Back to work. "It did come out well. I’m amazed."

She crosses her arms and continues to watch the tape. "Good news is we’ve only got to do a minor adjustment in your voiceover work. I think we can do that by overlaying it again at a different point."

"Hmm, so what you’re saying is you don’t need me and I can take the rest of the day off?" It’s a hint and she knows it.

I want out of here so I can get to the jewelers. She makes setting up surprises for her so damn difficult it’s not even funny.

Harper snorts. "Yeah, get a grip. We’ve still got to do the reverses so we can get the story on the cults wrapped."

Okay, that's a no. "That was a fun piece. I enjoyed working on it. And I learned a lot."

She rolls her eyes. "Uh huh."

I give her a swat on the arm. "What? I did learn a lot."

"Are you and Brian still seeing Madam What’s Her Name?"

"Not quite." That little woman terrifies me. She's got a direct feed from somewhere in the universe I've never been. I take a seat in the corner of the desk and watch the tape roll through our story. "I go see her and Brian uses it as an excuse to go see Doug."

"You’re playing matchmaker."

"I am not! How can you say such a thing?"

"It’s true." Harper reaches over, advancing the cue on the tape a bit. "You’re getting as bad as Mama. Is that what she teaches you in that kitchen of hers?"

"Oh, sweetheart, you really don’t want to know what kind of things we talk about in the kitchen." I think back to our bed at home.

The door bangs open and Langston steps in. He has a thick file in his hands. "I just got a look at the story board. Looks like the dynamic duo have finished up all their assignments early." He looks back and forth between us.

Like we’re gonna argue with him. He wants to call us the dynamic duo, I’m gonna let him. Better than the Wonder Twins. He’s being snide, so basically I ignore him.

Harper straightens and gives him a professional smile. "We’re getting ready to wrap the last one this afternoon. We’re trying to decide if Kels need to do another voiceover for this piece first. All the kickers are done as well."

I chuckle. I’ve become the queen of the touchy-feelies around here. I’ll bet I’ve canned fifteen pieces for the end of the show in the last two weeks. Gotta love those soft, feel good endings. I know I sure do.

Especially, Harper’s soft, feel-good ending.

Kelsey Diane Stanton, behave yourself!

I chuckle again.

Langston shoots me his best Executive Producer look. Buddy, I live with Harper Kingsley. You think that’s gonna work on me? Try again. "All right. Here’s the next thing you can sink your teeth into." He slaps the file into Harper’s hands. "You’re my only clear team at the moment which means you buy it."

"We’re on it," she announces proudly, giving me a little wink.

"Good. It’s a hot issue. I’m sure you’ll like that aspect of it."

"No briefing?" Harper inquires as he turns to leave.

Slowly, he faces her. "Read the file, Kingsley." Then he glances at me. "Or have the Talent read it to you."

With that little jibe he leaves us alone. "Prick," I mumble.

Harper digs into her wallet and hands me two dollars. "That one is on me. I was thinking the same thing."


* * *


Brian brings us the file and the copy I asked him to make. Harper and I are ensconced in my office about to go through the file and see what the new challenge is. "I was wondering," Brian begins, not quite able to meet my eyes. My God, he looks shy. Who would have thought it possible? "Can I take a half day off on Friday? Doug asked me up to his place for the weekend and I want to try to beat rush hour out of the city."

"Absolutely." I lean back in my chair and enjoy this moment. "But you must promise to get Kam one of those rawhides he likes so much. He goes through those things like candy."

"Consider it done. Thanks, boss." He leaves Harper and I to work. When he’s gone I hear her humming "Matchmaker, Matchmaker" from "Fiddler on the Roof". I throw a ball point pen at her which she blocks with the file.

"Oh, that’s a real good example for the twins, Little Roo. Teach ‘em how to put someone’s eye out. Put a buck in the jar for that."

"They hear, Tabloid, but they can’t see out. My skin is in the way. So it doesn’t count."

"Oh right! But you didn’t buy my rat’s a…" She stops and sticks out her tongue at me. "You didn’t get me that time."

"See, it’s working. There’s hope for you yet." I get up and go pour her a cup of coffee and retrieve a bottle of juice for me from the fridge. I gather up my copy of the file and join her on the couch. I make sure to keep a safe distance from her, but only because we’re working and I’ve been in such a mood lately.

I’m still trying to figure that one out. I know my libido will increase during the second trimester. But, no one said anything about the first. So far she’s not begging for mercy, but I have a feeling we’re just getting started.

"This is amazing," she mumbles past her coffee cup.

Oh yeah, the story.

I look at the file and read the briefing notes. It takes a minute for it to sink in. I look to my partner. "This is a joke, right?"

She shakes her head. "Nope. GeoTech want to store nuclear waste on Native American reservations."


* * *


I know I should let her sleep. I know I should let her sleep.

This is my new mantra.

Harper went to work early yesterday morning and didn’t get in until very late last night. Sometimes she gets engrossed in a story. And this one about the Navajo Nation’s woes looks to be a good one. I think she smells another Peabody.

She looks positively exhausted. For her to sleep through the twins early morning wake up call to me, she’s past exhausted.

The twins. We’re having twins. We made two little babies.

Ooo, making babies. That’s fun.

I should really let her sleep.

But I have a great, big, old problem.

I could try a very cold shower. Of course, I just got out of the shower. And it didn’t help. All that happened was I stepped out of it even more consumed by lust than when I stepped in it.

It is Saturday. She could go back to sleep after.

It doesn’t help that she’s laying in our bed, naked with the sheet pooled around her waist and her chest bare and just begging for an inspection. A very hands on inspection.

She’s practically inviting me to touch her.

No, I should let her sleep. She’s tired. She’s been working hard. Too hard. And she has to leave for New Mexico early Monday morning. She never takes care of herself on the road. If she doesn’t get her rest now, she won’t get it until we’re together again.

I look down at Kam. "I should let her sleep, huh?"

My faithful companion lowers his head and brings a paw up to cover his face. I swear he understands every word. I watch as he moves to lay down out in the hall where he is always relegated when Harper and I make love.

Well, that’s obviously one vote for not letting her sleep.

Smart doggie.

I move to the bed and lean over, my lips close to her ear. "Harper?" She groans a bit and shifts, the sheet falling a bit lower.

Oh God.

I scratch my neck. I should let her sleep. "Harper? Honey? Are you awake?"

She mumbles something that sounds like ‘no’ and rolls over onto her stomach, obstructing my view.

Well, hell’s bells. You know, she friggen woke me up to take the dog roller blading the other weekend. What I want to do would be a hell of a lot more fun than that.

Okay, what are my options here? I can take another cold shower and try to get some work done. I have some script revisions I could do.

I could take matters into my own hands. Now there’s a stupid suggestion. Scratch that. If I don’t get Harper, it isn’t happening.

She groans and snuggles down into the mattress. This does nothing for this battle I’m having. Jesus, Kels, get a grip and let the poor woman sleep. You’re horny. She’s tired. You’ll both survive.

I can’t believe I’m still standing here staring at her like she’s a piece of meat. I should be ashamed of myself for half the things I’m thinking about doing to her.

She shifts again, groaning and scratching at the sheets a bit. I think she’s looking for me. Either that or she’s dreaming about petting the dog. I certainly am hoping it’s not the latter.

You know, it couldn’t hurt to lay down next to her. I can maybe wake her up with a nice massage and see what happens from there. I’ll be able to tell if she’s too tired and I can stop.

Oh, yeah, smell what you’re shoveling, Kels. Phew.

I glance at Kam outside the door and he bestows me with a ‘get on with it because the floor is hard and I want to get back in my own bed’ look. Taking pity on Kam – I’ve always been an animal lover - I drag his bed into the hall and close the door. He won’t be coming in here any time soon.

I slide under the covers and snuggle in against her back, laying half on top of her. I reach around her to run my hand down her arm and lace our fingers together under her pillow. Kissing between her shoulder blades gently, I whisper, "Harper?"

"Hmm?" she groans, lifting her head slightly.

"I would very much like to do things to your body that would scare a normal human being."

She stops breathing. Yup, I got her attention now. She opens one eye in my direction. "Such as?" She sounds amused, almost disbelieving.

"Well," I move over and straddle her hips, lowering myself down on her lower back. That alone should make my intentions clear. I bend over and whisper in her ear. "I say we start with a massage. Am I too heavy?"

"Yes and no," she groans, releasing my hand and resting her head on her folded hands. I reach for a jar of hand cream that I keep next to the bed and begin warming it in my hands before applying it to her back. When I do, I’m rewarded with a long, happy groan.

"So," her voice sounds gravely and tight, very sexy, "where do we go from here?"

"Anywhere you want, lover." I lean in close to her ear after I undo my robe and toss it from the bed. "I will do anything you want. I’m back here all naked and willing."

"Oh God!" She buries her face in the mattress.

"Or," I give her earlobe a little nip. "Would you like me to drive this morning?"

"Oh, that sounds nice."

I am a bit surprised. I don’t get to do this very often, knowing Harper likes to be in control. Occasionally you have to take the bull by the horns, though, so to speak. "Then roll over."

I lift up just enough to allow her to turn over onto her back. She is stretched out luxuriously beneath me, her eyes closed and a lazy smile etched on her lips. I lean over again, rubbing myself against her navel ring and bringing our torsos in contact. Oh God, that’s nice. Taking her hands, I wrap them around the spindle working of the bed. "Hold on and don’t let go. If you do, I’ll stop. Do you understand?"

She nods, swallows hard and grunts something out that sounds like agreement.

"Good." I begin a very slow trail of tiny kisses down her body, starting on her forehead, making sure to cover her eyes and nose and chin. After that I move to her neck and start a campaign of small bites and nibbles designed to arouse and not leave a mark.

"Oh God, Kels." I feel her body tighten under my hands, including both nipples that are more than begging for my attention at this point. I don’t disappoint them. The feeling of her body arching into mine is wonderful as I move back and forth between her breasts, enjoying them immensely. Colonel Sanders has nothing on these. I stretch out, my body covering hers, our legs entwining, drawing us closer together.

I lift my head for a long, deep kiss. I allow one hand to remain on a breast as the other takes a long slow tour of her skin, quickly becoming warm and damp with perspiration. Oh lover, it’s gonna be a long, sweaty day.

I take control of the kiss, even as my wandering hand finds it mark and works itself between our bodies. I feel her hips buck, urging me to give her more than the soft gentle stroking she is receiving right now.

"Kelsey Diane," she growls at me after our kiss ends. She never calls me that unless I’m in trouble. "Stop teasing me."

"But," I give her earlobe another little bite, "that’s exactly what intend to do. All day, in a multitude of places and in a variety of positions."

It’s a very satisfied growl I hear this time. Then a major gasp as I take serious control and give her exactly what she wants. Then I begin whispering a series of comments in her ear. Telling her exactly how much I enjoy what I’m doing to her and how badly she needs me to do it. She nods her agreement. She still hasn’t let go of the bed. Damn she’s good.

I can feel her body beginning to quake and shudder, so I slow my attentions. This earns me a frustrated moan our neighbors two floors down can hear. "Kels!"

"Ah, ah, ah, I’m driving and I intend to take the long, scenic route," I remind her.

"Sunday driver," she mutters, tightening her grip on the headboard.


* * *


I run the glass across my forehead hoping its sweat will cool my very overheated skin. I am sitting here on the couch trying to catch my breath while Kels is in the kitchen trying to find us some real food to munch on. I’ve been her smorgasbord since about eight a.m., but I’m not complaining.

God, who knew? Apparently my Little Roo also jumped ahead a little in that baby book. Note to self: buy a copy of the Kama Sutra tomorrow and see what that gets me. Other than hospitalized.

I’m not even bothering to close my robe because I just get into trouble every time I try. I finally got her to agree that I could have it on at least. I was getting cold. Damn, she can be demanding. I think I may have strained my calf muscle in the family room about two hours ago. Hell, you hold a position like that for too long, you’re bound to hurt something.

I think we scared the fish in the tank in the living room too. Come to think of it, I haven’t seen the dog since I was given a reprieve long enough to walk him. It was the fastest walk of his young life. Kels threatened me if I didn’t get back quickly. Poor Kam only got to hike his leg up once and then come right back in. Didn’t even get to sniff the light pole.

Looking up, I find her smiling at me from the doorway. She’s holding a tray of food, but looking at me like I’m the last meal she’s ever gonna consume. Her eyes never leave mine during her approach. She places the tray on the couch by my right hand and then kneels between my legs. "Aren’t you gonna eat?" The words are out of my mouth before I can stop them. That was a stupid comment given our morning’s activities.

Kels chuckles and bites me gently on the upper right thigh. "That’s for you." She gestures toward the tray. "This is for me." She gestures to me.

Oh, God.


<fade out>


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