A strange feeling of anxiety begun brewing inside me as I watched Nico dressing up. I couldn’t believe it; he was going to school today. All his life, Nico wanted to be like other kids, go to school and get a proper education so he could become a doctor, and now he was finally getting his wish. The only thing was, I was afraid to send him to school.
Nico and I had never been separated for long, and now he was going to stay in the school for seven hours. What if something happened to him in my absence? Would the school inform me? Even though, after the first follow up two weeks ago, the doctor had told us that Nico was perfectly fine and was ready to go to school, I was still worried.
It had been a month and a half since Nico had his surgery, and in the past few weeks, we had got Nico admission in a local grammar school, and today was his first day. It was strange, I was feeling so worried about sending my brother to school, what would I do when I had to send my own baby to school? I needed to stop worrying, the school had a very good and secure environment, Nico would be safe there.
“Alice, where is my school bag?” Nico asked, looking around for his bag.
“It’s in the dining room, you will have breakfast then I’ll accompany you to school,” I answered.
“But I thought I would go in the school bus,” Nico said.
“You will from tomorrow, today I’ll accompany you with the chauffeur, come on you don’t want to be late.” I ushered Nico out of his room and in the dining room.
“Where is Gideon?” Nico asked, sitting down on one of the chairs.
“He is at work, he had to go early, had this video conference thing with a foreign investor,” I replied.
The door of the dining room opened and Kieran sauntered in, smiling widely. I was surprised to see him as Gideon didn’t tell me he would be coming.
“Hey Nic, ready for your first day, little man?” Kieran asked, sitting next to Nico.
“Yeah, I am going to be in the fifth grade!” Nico told him, grinning.
“Wow, you are one smart fella,” Kieran commented. “Good morning, little mushroom.” Kieran said to me.
“Good morning, what are you doing here? Gideon didn’t tell me you’d be coming over,” I stated.
“Isn’t it obvious? I came to drop Nico off to school, the chauffeur is already waiting,” Kieran answered.
“Thank you, Kieran, but there is no need for that. I’m going to drop Nico off, so you didn’t have to bother,” I said.
“Don’t be silly, I’ll accompany you both.” While munching on a slice of bread, Kieran stood up followed by Nico.
“Let’s go, Alice, I don’t want to be late on my first day,” Nico stated.
I was about grab Nico’s bag but he beat me to it. “It’s okay, Alice, now my heart is fixed, you don’t have to carry stuff for me anymore.” Nico slipped his arms in the bag straps before striding out of the dining room with me and Kieran following behind.
Slipping inside the car, all three of us drove to Nico’s school. The excitement that Nico was feeling was palpable as he gazed out of the window, a beautiful sparkle in his eyes that I had never seen before but never wanted it to extinguish. He kept on asking Kieran questions about what school was like for him, and Kieran answered every single one of his questions, not seeming the least bit bothered.
In twenty minutes we arrived outside of a giant brick building. Nico wasted no time in getting out and running towards the entrance of the school. I had to call out to him to stop him from dashing ahead.
“Okay, now, be careful and be good, no picking fights, and if anyone hurts you or anything you tell the teacher immediately, and try not to exert yourself too much, okay?” I instructed Nico, my tone stern.
“Don’t worry, Alice, I’ll be good,” Nico assured me.
“Okay, good, now where is your teacher.” I looked around to see any teacher standing outside. Thankfully, I saw the teacher who had met with us when we had first come here for Nico’s admission. I immediately went over to her, when she saw us she gave a wide smile.
“Hello, good morning, Nico, welcome to the school,” Miss Hardings said.
Miss Harding was a sweet woman in her mid-twenties with auburn hair and gray eyes. She had been very good to us and had answered all my questions regarding Nico’s education with utmost patience. She had eased all my doubts and worries and I was comfortable talking to her.
“Thank you, Miss Hardings,” Nico said, bouncing on his toes. I could tell that Nico couldn’t wait to go to class.
Nico turned to me and gave me a tight hug, before pecking my cheek. “Bye Alice, I have to go to class now. Will you come to pick me up?”
“Of course buddy, I’ll come to pick you up for school,” I said but Kieran intervened.
“Actually, I’ll come to pick you up, your sister will be a little busy,” Kieran stated, making me frown. Nico nodded and hurried inside.
Once Nico vanished from my sight, I turned my attention to Miss Hardings. “Would you keep an eye on him, and please call me immediately if anything happens.” I told her.
She nodded with a smile. “Don’t worry, Mrs. Maslow, Nico is safe here and we will contact you if something happens, you have nothing to worry about,” she replied.
Nodding my head, I bid her goodbye and walked out of the school building with Kieran beside me. Once we settled in the car, I asked Kieran the question that had entered my mind as soon as he spoke up in front of Nico.
“What made you think I will be too busy to pick Nico up from school?” I asked.
“Did you forget; you have your first scan today?” Kieran reminded me.
“Oh my God, I totally forgot it was today.” I couldn’t believe I had forgotten all about it. I didn’t even remind Gideon last night.
“It’s okay, Gideon remembered and told me to pick Nico up from school because you would be at the doctor’s,” Kieran informed me.
“Right, wow, thank God he remembered,” I said.
“Of course he would remember, he had the date marked on every single calendar he owns, put alarms on his phone and had his PA remind him,” Kieran informed me.
“Wow, I didn’t think Gideon would take such measures regarding a scan,” I commented.
“You have no idea, little mushroom,” Kieran muttered.
Gideon arrived at 11 o’ clock precisely. He gave me a tender kiss before telling me to get ready. I had donned on my trench coat before grabbing my wallet and exiting the room with Gideon.
Throughout the ride, my heart kept thundering against my chest. I was nervous about this, extremely nervous. A heavy feeling settled in the pit of my stomach as we got closer and closer to the hospital. My mind kept coming up with one ridiculous scenario after the other, making me want to throw up.
I glanced to my left to see Gideon sitting calmly, not looking the least bit troubled about all of this. It always impressed me how calm and cool Gideon really was. I had never seen him lose control. It was impressive.
As if sensing my gaze on him, Gideon turned to me and gave me a soft smile. That smile affected me more than it should’ve. That small smile was enough to ease some of my worries.
“Nervous?” Gideon asked, the soft smile not leaving his face.
“How did you know?” Was I that transparent?
“It’s written all over your face. Not to mention that you keep touching your neck.” Gideon told me.
“Oh, I didn’t realize I was doing that,” I responded sheepishly. I was really missing my necklace. Every time I got nervous, the necklace was the first thing my hand went to, and now even though the necklace was gone, my mind was still programmed to have my hand touch my neck every time I was nervous.
Gideon took my hand in his and gave it a reassuring squeeze. “Don’t worry, everything will be all right, trust me,” he said.
I nodded and watched as the chauffeur parked the car in the hospital parking lot. Gideon and I exited the car and walked inside the hospital. As soon as the smell of disinfectants slithered up my nose, a wave of anxiety hit me full force. Right then, I wanted nothing more than to make a mad dash out of the hospital. I didn’t want to do this, what if there was something wrong with the baby?
It was like Gideon could sense my inner turmoil, because no sooner had I thought about running, he had gotten a firm hold on my wrist and led me to the reception. After telling the lady that we had appointment with Dr. Hubble, and getting the information about her office, Gideon led me down the corridor and in the elevator.
“Why are we seeing a different doctor? Why not the old one, the one whom we went to last time?” I asked Gideon as the elevator slowly moved up.
“I did not like that doctor, I like this one so that’s why,” he answered.
The elevator doors opened and Gideon led me into another corridor. There were a few doors on this floor. Gideon stopped in front of the third door and knocked. A sweet feminine voice told us to enter before Gideon pushed the door open and strode inside.
Dr. Hubble’s room was like a standard room with a hospital bed against one wall, an ultrasound machine next to the bed. Dr. Hubble’s desk was against the opposite wall of the one with the hospital bed. All in all the room was really small and plain.
When she saw us, Dr. Hubble stood up to greet Gideon and I. She was a fairly tall woman with blonde hair, brown eyes and a radiant smile; she was a little on the curvy side, but that only added to her beauty.
“So first scan, nervous?” She asked me, handing me a gown to change into. I took the gown from her with a nod of affirmation and quickly changed into it in the bathroom before exiting and laying down on the bed.
Nerves attacked me once again as I stared at the ultrasound machine as the doctor fiddled with it. Gideon came and stood next to me, holding my hand. It was in times like this when I was glad I wasn’t alone; Gideon’s presence gave me a strange sense of comfort—something I couldn’t get used to even if I wanted to.
“Alright, you guys ready?” Dr. Hubble gave us another radiant smile, before shifting her attention to the machine.
“Yes,” Gideon responded. His grip on my hand tightened as he stared at the blank screen.
Dr. Hubble moved my gown away, exposing my stomach before grabbing a plastic bottle. She squirted a glob of cold gel onto my stomach before spreading the gel with a wand.
“It’s not too cold, is it?” She asked me.
“No doctor,” I replied, my heart drumming in my chest.
Soon enough the screen started showing a black and gray picture. I couldn’t make much out of it as it looked splotchy and kind of blurry. Dr. Hubble moved the wand around before stopping at one spot.
“There, see that.” Dr. Hubble pointed at a little blob with what looked to be a head. “That is your baby, you are exactly eight weeks and three days along,” she informed us.
It was like nothing else existed except for the baby. I couldn’t tear my eyes away from the screen as I looked at my baby for the first time. My heart clenched in joy and pain. Joy at knowing that this precious little baby was inside me and pain at knowing that it would be impossible for me to part with it when the time came.
Suddenly, the thought of being just a carrier of this baby did not sit well with me. I couldn’t give up this baby, not now, not ever; what was I thinking when I signed the contract. I couldn’t give this baby up. In just a few seconds, this baby has owned my heart and I knew that I couldn’t live without him or her.
“It’s too early to determine the sex of the baby, but would you like to hear the heartbeat?” Dr. Hubble enquired.
“Yes please,” Gideon replied, his voice thick with emotion.
In another few seconds, the room was filled with a strong beating sound. My breath hitched as I heard the sound, trying to memorize it. I felt Gideon brushing his thumb over my cheek. I glanced at his thumb to see it was wet. I didn’t realize I was crying.
“This is your baby’s heartbeat, it’s strong and steady,” Dr. Hubble informed us.
“You hear that, little fairy, this is our baby’s heartbeat.” Gideon bent down and kissed me deeply.
“Would you like a print out of the scan?” She asked.
“Yes please.” Once again Gideon responded, it was like I had lost the ability to speak. I just couldn’t believe it, seeing my baby had made me so happy.
Dr. Hubble quickly printed out the scan and handed it to Gideon. After telling me all about pregnancies and prescribing me some prenatal vitamins we bid Dr. Hubble goodbye until the next scan.
Once in the car, Gideon took out the prints from the envelope and gazed at it with so much love I wanted to cry. His eyes were shimmering with love and happiness and his lips were curved in a huge smile.
“He’s beautiful, isn’t he?” Gideon showed me the picture.
“Yes, but it could be a girl,” I said, eyeing the picture with barely contained happiness.
“It’s going to be a boy, I’m sure of it. You must take good care of yourself from now on, okay, little peach?” Gideon kissed my forehead.
“Yes, I will,” I said with conviction. And I was, I was not going to let anything happen to my baby.
“We’re having a baby, little dove.” It was like Gideon was the happiest man alive.
I nodded and bit my lip to stop myself from crying. Seeing the baby had sealed my decision for me, but it had also put me in a predicament. I knew that I couldn’t live without my baby.
How in the world was I going to part with my baby?