Bud got to bed late that night. Marie had been asleep for a couple of hours already, or so he thought. Thanks to Biebe he’d been working on paperwork. The Sheriff had said they were getting behind and needed to get caught up. Bud fucking hated paperwork. And as long as it took him to enter reports into the computer he’d be just as happy to go back to writing or typing them up.
He’d spent two hours entering a month’s worth of reports and another hour with his face pressed against the desk asleep. Bud sure as shit would rather be pressed against his currently round and very curvy wife than have the wood indentations from the desk pressed into his forehead.
But finally he was up to date. Until tomorrow when another half dozen calls resulted in reports being generated and having to be entered into the fucking computer. Bud had no idea how a village with a population as low as The Glen could have so many calls. Calls made work interesting. The reports…not so much.
Bud took a quick shower, dried off and slipped into bed. Immediately he heard Marie sigh. She was turned away from him on her side. He moved against her back and slipped his arms around her. His hands rested on her huge abdomen.
She was now nine months pregnant and due to deliver their baby and day. And yep, Bud had referred to her belly as huge. He’d nearly been banished to the couch for life. It had taken a helluva lot of apologising to get him out of that shit he’d walked right into. The flowers had helped a lot.
They were Lachlan’s idea. The flyboy was a surprisingly good source of ideas on how to successfully maneuver through the minefield of pregnancy. He’d been through it several months ago with Marie’s cousin, Ashley.
“Sorry, Hon. I didn’t mean to wake you.” He kissed her sweet smelling hair and gently rubbed her belly.
“You didn’t wake me, Bud.” She sighed again. “I’ve been awake since I came to bed. I was so tired, but I can’t seem to sleep. I’m so uncomfortable tonight. Your baby is restless too.”
Uh,oh. It was his baby. She was definitely having a bad night. He placed one of his hands on her low back and began to rub it. It was bothering her a lot now.
“Is your back hurting?” He massaged it more.
“Mmm, that feels good. Thank you, Bud. Yes, right there.” She arched her back into his hand.
He whispered to her and continued to rub her back. Bud felt some of the tension disappear from her and her hreathing evened out.Just when she seemed to have fallen asleep her body suddenly jerked awake.
“Sssh, Hon.” He whispered to her and kissed her ear. His hand continued to rub her low back. “Relax.”
“That’s wonderful, Bud. Just as I was falling asleep I suddenly had to go to the bathroom.” She struggled to get to her feet.
Bud supported her back until she finally was upright. She waddled quickly toward the bathroom with one hand supporting her lower back. Watching her go through this pregnancy Bud understood why women were the ones who got pregnant. He didn’t think he or most of the men he knew would be able to tolerate what he’d seen her go through.
He rolled over on his back, threw the sheet over the lower part of his body and cupped his hands behind his head. He’d wait for her to get back to bed and rub her back again until she fell asleep. Bud figured it wouldn’t take him much to fall asleep after her. Today had been a long day and tomorrow morning would be here sooner than he’d like.
Because Marie had lost their baby in the seventh month of her first pregnancy he’d worried about her from the moment she’d told him of this pregnancy. In the last couple of months he’d worried about her and the baby. The more he’d felt it kick and seen it grow on the ultrasounds, the more excited he’d become about being a father. He loved his niece, Katie Marie and watching her grow had made him hope to have their own baby.
She was sure taking a long time to pee.
“Hon, you okay?” Bud called her.
Marie came to the doorway.
“Bud, it’s time.”
“My waters just broke. The discomfort I’ve been feeling the last couple of hours was the start of labor. We need to go to the hospital now.”
Bud jumped from the bed, got tangled in the sheet and took a nosedive into the carpet. Marie rushed over as he cursed and struggled to his feet.
“Are you okay, Bud?” She fussed over him.
“Fuck! Am I okay? You’re the one having a baby.”
“Yes, but I don’t want my husband to break his neck.” She kissed his cheek. “Besides, I really don’t want to have to drive to the hospital myself.” Marie smiled at him. Suddenly she drew in a deep breath and began to pant as she cupped her abdomen. “Bud, I’m having a contraction. They’re getting stronger.”
Bud guided her to sit on the bed while he hurriedly dressed.
Marie watched him after the contraction was over.
“Bud, why are you putting on your uniform?”
“We’re taking the cruiser with the lights and sirens on. I’m getting you to the hospital in time. I’m done delivering babies, mine included. Unless I have to.”
Marie nodded. That made sense to her. As much as she loved her husband she preferred delivering their baby in the hospitals maternity ward with an epidural instead of at home or in their car with no medical backup.
Bud hustled her out to the cruiser in 5 minutes. Her suitcase was already packed. He had bottled water and towel just in case.
By the time Bud roared into the emergency room parking lot, Marie’s contractions were 5 minutes apart. An hour later they were the proud new parents of a baby girl with red hair. Yep, there was another one in the family.
Bud glances over at his exhausted sleeping wife. She was doing well considering what she’d just been through. He looked at the small blanket wrapped bundle in his arms. He marvelled at her perfect tiny pink lips which formed an ‘o’ as she yawned in her sleep. Welcome to the world, Eliza Jane White.