Noah would have told me I would make a wonderful mother, and I would have believed him. He wasn't here anymore to feed my lies.
I could terminate the pregnancy here and now. I had the option before the rest of the pack found out. However, this would be the last connection I had to him. His child was all I had left.
Someone knocked on the door, and I immediately covered up the stick with toilet paper. I stood up and flushed, washing my hands before opening the door. "Sorry, I started my period." Lies.
All I could tell were lies. I didn't want anyone else to know about the baby.
As I walked down the hallway, someone stopped me. "Brianne, we should talk," said the alpha.
I turned and nodded, following him to his office. We sat across from one another, his desk separating us. I tried not to squirm in my seat as I wondered if he knew. What would he say?
"It's been three months now." He folded his hands together atop his desk. "We are well aware that grief takes time, but this war is getting worse and we are asking you to step back in if you are able. Do you think you could take your position?"
I could tell him the truth here and now. I could say that I was pregnant and I had a little wolf cub to protect. However, I said nothing of that subject. "I can help."
"We appreciate you. Thank you." He stood and walked me to the door before turning around and stopping me. "If at any point you need to pull out, let me know."
"Thank you." I left his office. Everyone else around me was drained of all energy. Just like me, they were watching their loved ones die at the hands of this war. Those bloodsuckers were ripping them away from us.
Instead of walking home from the pack house, I stopped by the river. I lifted my shirt, looking at the nonexistent bump in the reflection. Behind me, a twig snapped and I spun around, dropping my shirt and scanning the area. I slowed down my breathing enough until I could focus on a heartbeat—or worse, nothing at all.
Vampires were as quiet as a mouse. They had no reason to breathe when they didn't need a heart to beat. They were vermin for living in this world and taking innocent lives. They were poison in our veins.
When nothing came into view or made another noise, I loosened up and headed back to my house. Pictures still hung on the walls because I didn't have the heart to take them down. Noah died, but he was not forgotten.
I approached our wedding photo, reminiscing in the joy that the day brought. It was a milestone in our journey together. It was the day that I finally started calling him my husband and I knew his commitment to me was true.
I made my way to the bathroom and removed the hairtie from my messy hair. A few strands came out, and I struggled to get the knot undone, but I managed finally. With scissors. It had been so stuck in there that I had to cut it out.
After that battle, I undressed and took a hot shower. When Noah first died, I gave up on everything. I'd stopped eating and showering. I stopped taking care of myself. Every night that I laid in our bed alone, I cried. I wanted to end it all right there but I had no energy. I just gave up on trying.
Maybe I was showering now, but the days barely got easier. They especially wouldn't be any easier with this baby inside of me. Knowing the last time Noah and I had sex was over three months ago, I could take a wild guess and assume I was already into the second trimester. That's what terrified me. I had been pregnant this whole time without him. I was left alone to do everything by myself now. Noah would never get to meet his own child.
So many days went by when I used to dream of us having kids together. Never did any of those days look like this, and maybe that was my fault. I had always hoped for the best but never expected the worst, and this was my karma.
I combed my hair just as I exited the shower with a towel around my body. It was uneven now with a chunk missing. I grabbed the scissors and continued to finish the job, evening everything back out. I'd had long hair my entire life. I used to love trying every hairstyle in the book, but what was even the point now?
Just above my shoulders now, my hair looked clean. My head was lighter.
I jumped at the sound of a noise, and I immediately grabbed a knife from the cabinet. Noah had made sure we stashed a knife in every room when the war against vampires began.
As I left the bathroom, I held the knife behind my back, pointed towards the ground. I tuned my ears to listen for any sound at all, but nothing could be heard. The sound I thought I originally heard was that of someone making a thump noise.
I grabbed my phone after I checked every room carefully, and I dialed the Alpha's number. I stared at the number, before shaking my head. Nobody would believe me. I was just a pregnant widow, and that was enough to make them think I was hearing things due to my grief. Aside from that, I didn't want to be the woman who threw a noise out of proportion and asked for guards. Nobody would come after me, right? I was just some useless wolf at the moment.
I turned my head, glancing at the closest behind me. I slowly crept towards it, and as I threw open the doors, I sliced my knife across the entire space. Nobody was in here.
That was just it. I was a useless wolf, making me the easiest one to take out. I knew better than to assume nobody would come after me. Noah taught me to prepare for the worst, yet I never listened and it got him killed.
Hurrying to my phone, I called the Alpha and told him that I feared someone was watching me. After a little bit of convincing, he finally sent some wolves over to make sure I had some kind of protection. That eased the worry inside of me, and I finally had the chance to get dressed in peace. I made dinner for myself and my guards. Rick and Dave.
"Thank you, Brianne. This is amazing." Rick practically inhaled his food as he shoveled every bite into his mouth.
Dave took his time with his food. "You say someone is after you?"
I shrugged. "I don't need to say. Twice today I've heard something like someone watching me had accidentally made a sound. I know that I'm still adjusting to living alone, but I'm not crazy. I haven't heard sounds like this before. It's not right." I debated telling them that I also had a child to look out for now, but I decided against it. I didn't want anyone to know just yet.
The corner of my lips twitched as I remembered the last time I cooked dinner for anyone. It was for Noah, and he had loved every bite of it. He made sure I knew it, too, because after we cleaned up, he showed me just how much he loved the food. I'd never feel his touch again.
"You all right Brianne?" Dave asked.
I looked at him and nodded a bit. "I'm okay." I forced down a few bites. "I'll be okay." I gave him the only smile I could manage.
I was supposed to be able to move on. I was supposed to be thinking about how I had our child to care for now, so I didn't have to be sad about losing Noah. It wasn't that easy. I was sad, and even if I had a piece of us to raise, I was alone in this. I would never have someone to come home and hug me after a long day at work. Even after our child grew up and moved out, I would be left by myself with nobody to love me every night.