She was so pale, not her usual golden brown. Sitting down next to her on the bed, he pushed a lock of hair off Christopher’s forehead. Their child was curled up napping next to Emma. He had been more frightened by Emma’s collapse than Chris had been. He’d tried to comfort the little boy while the doctor and nurses worked on Emma.
When Emma had regained consciousness, Christopher had crawled up next to her on the bed and wouldn’t leave her side. His mother had reassured him as best she could but had fallen into a restless sleep, her energy depleted by the active morning. He had eventually fallen asleep too.
Chris looked up to see Cash in the doorway. The other man motioned for him to step out of the room so they could talk. After one last lingering look at his lover and his son, he got up and closed the door after stepping through it.
“I talked to the administrator and the head of security,” Cash began intently. “They’ve agreed to place one of their guards on her at all times.”
“24/7?” Chris asked stubbornly.
“Yes. The added cost will be billed to you.”
“Of course,” Chris scoffed.
“I’m also going to have my men all around the perimeter of the clinic grounds and at every entrance and exit. They’ll be hidden and no one will know about them,” Cash said softly.
Chris let out a relieved breath. “Good,” he sighed. “Do you think that’ll be enough?”
“No I’d rather be in here with her, but that isn’t going to happen,” the security expert gritted out. “I can come during visiting hours when traffic is at its highest. I’ll stay in her room.”
“No,” Chris growled, jealousy rearing its head. “I’ll be here during visiting hours.”
“We both can be.”
“Fine,” Chris capitulated. He was still pissed by the clinic’s denial of his private security team being inside the building. Not minding Cash near his woman, he didn’t want the man in Emma’s bedroom by himself though.
“I’ll stick with you and Christopher,” he continued telling him the arrangements.
“Any information on who’s after us?” Chris asked his concern starting to crush him. He hated the idea of leaving Emma’s side at night, but he had no choice. She needed to be in here; her body was slowly surrendering to death. He wasn’t about to lose her to the effects of poverty when he was one of the best-paid sports figures in the world.
“Yes,” Cash answered reluctantly.
“What?” Chris snapped, not liking the man hadn’t told him the minute he got the news.
“They are mob enforcers.”
“The mob is after us?” Chris exclaimed angrily. “Why would the mob threaten my family?”
“They are mob affiliated but I’ve heard that they do freelance work when they want to. If this is mob related then it might have something to do with illegal sports betting. I don’t think that is the case. They have never used Emma or Christopher against you, to throw a game.”
“So you think it’s someone else who’s hired them?”
“Yes. I’m not sure who yet.”
“Find out!” Chris growled impatiently. “I don’t want this threat hanging over their heads anymore.”
“I will,” Cash snarled back. “I know what I’m doing.”
“Then get me some fucking answers!”
“I’m going to check on my men,” the man ground out turning away trying to remember the tremendous stress the other man was under.
Chris entered Emma’s room quietly. A little head popped up from Emma’s side. He broke into an automatic smile at the sight of son.
“Daddy?” Christopher’s little voice sounded concerned.
“What’s wrong buddy?” Chris asked gently, coming to stand next to him. He crouched down beside him.
“Daddy Mommy’s real hot.”
Chris looked at Emma and saw that she was sweating and her breathing ragged. He quickly pulled his son off the bed and back into the recliner.
“Stay here,” he ordered him. Without waiting for affirmation, Chris went back to Emma. She was burning up beneath his hand on her forehead and then her chest.
He pressed the call button. The Peterson clinic lived up to its reputation and someone came onto the speaker system almost immediately.
“How can I help you Ms. Carrington?” a woman’s voice sounded.
“Get the doctor!” Chris barked. “She’s got a high fever. She’s burning up! Hurry!”