Theodore’s kisses on my forehead made me feel loved. His arm securely around my shoulders made me feel protected. His scent slithering up my nostrils made me feel alive. His voice in my ears was just pure bliss.
“Look at me,” he commanded.
I tightened my arms around his waist and buried my head deeper in his chest, not looking at him.
“Darling, I said look at me,” Theodore commanded again, his voice firm.
I raised my head and when Theodore’s intense gaze locked with mine, I felt my knees weakening. He was looking at me like he wanted to devour me. I stiffened a bit when his lips touched mine, but then relaxed.
“You’re not suppose to do that in front of your parents,” I scolded him for kissing me.
“They’re not here,” he replied, pecking my lips.
I swept my gaze over to where Theodore’s parents were standing just a minute ago only to find them gone; it was just the two of us.
Returning my gaze to Theodore, I took notice of his current condition. The left side of his upper body was bandaged heavily while his right side was free of bandages, fortunately. There was an IV wire attached to his arm which led to a transparent bag half filled with transparent fluid. Even though, Theodore wasn’t severely injured, I still hated those bandages on him; they sent a stab of guilt straight to my heart, after all it was because of me my husband got shot.
“Hey, what’s wrong?” Theodore questioned, taking a hold of my chin and raising my eyes to meet his.
Was I that transparent? Or did getting shot improve Theodore’s observation? Was he always observant? Whatever it was, Theodore had sensed the turmoil within me.
“I—I’m sorry,” I mumbled.
Theodore frowned, confusion evident in his eyes. “For what?”
“You got shot because of me,” I mumbled, biting my lower lip to stop myself from crying.
“No sweetheart, I’m alive because of you,” Theodore replied, kissing my forehead, his arm securely around my shoulders.
“No, if I hadn’t come you wouldn’t have gotten hurt,” I argued, kissing his neck, reassuring myself that he was really alive.
“If you hadn’t come, Ian would’ve shot me in the head and I would never have gotten to see you or my babies ever again,” he countered.
“I love you, so much,” I mumbled, thanking the higher power for giving my husband another chance at life.
“I love you, too,” Theodore whispered. “How are the babies?” he asked.
“They’re fine,” I told him with a smile.
“Are you sure? Did the doctor take a look at you?”
“Uh, well...not exactly, I was too worried about you so the thought of making sure the babies were okay didn’t cross my mind, but don’t worry I’m sure they are fine, I don’t feel weird or anything,” I assured him.
“I don’t care if you don’t feel weird, flower, you’re going to be looked at by the doctor,” Theodore stated, making me roll my eyes.
The man got shot and he’s still dominating.
“Fine, when is the doctor going to discharge you?” I questioned, changing the subject.
“I’m getting out of here before night falls, I’m not staying here,” Theodore answered.
“You can’t get out of here without the permission of the doctor,” I pointed out.
Theodore’s eyes hardened and his mouth set in firm line. “I don’t need anyone’s permission to stay or leave, and I couldn’t care less whether the doctor deems me capable of leaving or not, we’re leaving in two hours,” he said with finality.
“You’re not leaving until the doctor gives the green light, I don’t care if you don’t like it here, you’re going to stay here until you’re better,” I responded.
My breath hitched when Theodore lowered his arm from my shoulders and instead wrapped it around my waist tightly.
“I think you forgot who has the power here, princess, but don’t worry, I’m more than happy to remind you, once we get out of here,” he squeezed my waist, “in two hours,” he finished, leaving no room for argument.
I narrowed my eyes at him. “If you leave without the doctor’s permission, rest assured that we won’t be having s3x until you’re better, even if it takes two months for you to heal,” I calmly stated, and winked at Theodore when he narrowed his eyes, clearly pissed.
“Don’t test me,” he warned.
“No, no, you don’t test me,” I retorted.
“Mr. Benson, I think it would be better for you to stay at the hospital for a few days so we can monitor you,” Dr. Fisher said, trying his best to reason with Theodore who was completely ignoring his advice.
“And I said I’m leaving, I feel fine and there’s nothing you can do here that can’t be done at my home, so get me the discharge papers before I lose my patience and my temper and fire your medical ass,” Theodore threatened.
The doctor muttered something about ungrateful patients then strode out of the room, leaving Theodore and I alone.
“Can you pass me my watch, darling? ” Theodore requested.
I grabbed the watch from where it was lying on the blue, plastic chair with all the other items that belonged to Theodore and handed it to him.
“You should apologize to the doctor, he only wants what’s best for you, and why did you threaten to fire him? You don’t own this hospital,” I reprimanded my husband.
“First of all, I don’t apologize to anyone, people apologize to me, the only person who I’ve apologized to in all my life, is you; second, the doctor can’t do anything for me that can’t be done at home, after all I got my own personal nurse, who would enjoy nursing me back to health,” he answered seductively, making my cheeks heat up. “And third, sweetheart, you’ll be surprised to know what I actually own.”
Before I could say anything, the door opened and Harry strolled in followed by Dr. Fisher, who looked as if he would detain Theodore—until he healed completely—given half the chance.
“Hey, big brother, how do you feel?” Harry enquired.
“I’m fine, and why didn’t you get the doctor to take a look at Hailey?” Theodore questioned.
“Trust me bro, I would’ve had the doctor take a look at her, but at that time she wasn’t willing to leave your side, she stayed right outside the OR until I dragged her out to get her something to eat,” Harry answered.
I bit my lip in embarrssment. I couldn’t believe that Theodore’s family had seen me in such a weak state. I mean, I could believe that, but I never wanted to be seen in such gloomy state, by anyone, ever. And my new family had witnessed me at my ultimate low, and that was something I was now finding hard to digest.
“What did you have her eat?” Theodore asked.
“I had to force her to eat a chocolate cupcake and drink a cup of coffee,” Harry told Theodore, whose eyes widened.
“Coffee?! You weren’t suppose to give her coffee, she’s pregnant for God’s sake!” Theodore exclaimed.
“Well how on Earth was I suppose to know that?” Harry demanded to know.
“You know she’s pregnant, idiot,” Theodore said.
“I mean, not to give her coffee,” Harry corrected.
“What the hell? Everybody knows not to give pregnant women coffee.” Theodore was acting as if Harry had fed me poison instead of coffee.
“Well don’t get your panties in a twist, she barely took two sips of coffee,” Harry muttered, rolling his eyes.
“No thanks to you,” Theodore snapped.
“Alright, that’s enough, Theodore, I didn’t drink coffee, so I’m fine...we’re fine.” I squeezed his uninjured arm while placing my hand on my tummy.
“Mr. Benson, the discharge papers are here,” Dr. Fisher spoke handing Theodore the discharge papers which he took without a word.
Quickly filling out the discharge papers, Theodore all but ran out of his room, with Harry and I following behind. I thought Theodore would head straight for the exit but instead he asked where the OB/GYN was from the reception. Once he got his answer, Theodore led us all the way to the OB/GYN, instructing Harry to stay outside while Theodore and I went inside.
Once we were inside her office, Theodore demanded the OB/GYN, who looked to be in her early forties with dark brown hair and blue eyes, to take a look at me and the babies. Dr. Pearson, as she told us her name, immediately got to work. Once Theodore saw the babies on the ultrasound machine—who have grown a bit more since we last saw them—and heard their heartbeats, and got the reassurance from Dr. Pearson that all three of us were okay, did he leave the hospital.
The drive to the estate was mainly filled with Theodore and Harry bickering. I, on the other hand, was constantly running my eyes over my husband, making sure that he was alright, that he wasn’t in any pain. Which was stupid, because he was in pain, but the way he was acting and talking it didn’t look as if he had gotten shot just hours ago.
“Theo, is that b!tch Cindy going to come after you now that Ian’s dead?” Harry questioned.
My heart nearly stopped at hearing his words. Dead?! Ian’s dead?! I killed Ian! Holy God I’m a murderer, shit!
“Ian’s dead?” Theodore asked, shocked.
“Not really, but he might as well be, he’s paralyzed, for life, the doctors say that he’s just a living corpse now,” Harry informed us, kick starting my heart.
“He’s paralyzed?” Theodore queried while I was still repeating the fact that Ian wasn’t dead but just paralyzed in my head to prevent myself from fainting on my husband. He did not need an unconscious woman in his arms right now; he wasn’t in the condition to handle it.
“Yeah, apparently Hailey stabbed him in the back which had the knife damaging his spinal cord, paralyzing him; the police would want you guys to give a statement and all,” Harry told us.
“The police can come tomorrow, I got nothing to hide, and as for that b!tch Cindy, well let’s just say if and when she comes I’ll have a nice surprise for her, too,” Theodore muttered darkly.
“What’ve you got in mind?” Harry asked, glancing from the rearview mirror at Theodore who’s eyes have darkened with visible rage.
“Something that will make her regret she ever tried to mess with me,” Theodore muttered under his breath, clearly not wanting Harry and I to hear.
Harry parked the car and got out, then proceeded to help Theodore get out of the car who told him to back off with a hard glare. I was thinking about helping Theodore get out of the car along with Harry but the glare that was meant for Harry stopped me from coming to my husband’s aid as well.
All three of us went inside the house where we were greeted by not only the staff members but by Theodore’s family as well. Not wanting to be a bad hostess, I immediately went about dealing with the guests and making sure that Julie was cooking dinner, while Harry and Theodore attended the guests. Everyone was gathered around Theodore, asking whether he was okay, cursing Ian and Cindy, and overall talking to each other.
After making sure that everything was set for dinner and that Marcy, another staff member, was bringing the refreshments, I hesitantly went in the living room, as I was worried about the Bensons’ reaction to all that transpired today.
“Hey, the hero of the day is here,” Adam said looking at me.
I blushed at his comment as the others laughed while some agreed with him. Without saying anything, I hurried over to where Theodore sat on the sofa and sat down next to him.
“Are you okay?” I asked, concerned.
“I’m perfectly fine, flower, don’t worry,” Theodore answered with a small smile.
“Are you sure? Do you need anything?” I questioned.
“So, Hailey, how do you feel?” Teresa asked.
“Uh...fine,” I answered, confused as to why she was asking if I was okay.
“Don’t feel guilty about stabbing Ian, the asshole deserved it,” Harry said with a sneer.
“I don’t, I’m glad I did it,” I answered firmly, not caring if the Bensons considered me crazy for wanting someone dead.
“I think I speak for everybody present in this room when I say that I’m glad you stabbed him,” Trent said with pride in his voice.
Everybody hollered their agreement while Stephanie whistled in that cool way where you whistle by putting your fingers in your mouth. I looked at Theodore to see him smiling at me. When he saw me, he softly kissed my lips; his lust and desire evident in that kiss.
“Theo, man, I’m glad you married such a bad ass, because now I would worry a little less about my nephews or nieces, as they would be kick ass like their mom,” Adam remarked.
“You just don’t want the responsibility of being an uncle and taking care of the kids,” Harry taunted.
“Yeah, I’m worried that the babies would be protecting Adam rather than the other way around,” Stephanie joked, resulting in a chorus of laughter and a red faced Adam.
“Excuse me, I’m sorry to interrupt but dinner is ready,” Julie said.
Immeidately, everybody stood up and raced to the dining room, eager to eat. I stayed behind with Theodore, who didn’t move from his spot on the sofa.
“Would you like me to bring you dinner here, or in bed?” I asked.
“Hailey, I told you I’m fine, I’m not an invalid nor made of glass; and as for your question, I’m going to have dinner with the rest of them,” Theodore replied, getting up.
“Are you sure?”
“Yes princess, I’m sure, now come on, they won’t eat until we join them,” Theodore told me.
“Why don’t you go ahead, I’ll be right there, I have to do something,” I said, remembering something very important that I had to do before I had dinner.
Theodore nodded and with a soft kiss on my cheek he went to the dining room. When Theodore was out of my sight I dashed to the bedroom and pulled my phone out from my purse.
Scrolling through my contacts until I found Amanda’s number, I sent a quick text with a smile of pure happiness on my face.
Thank you, Mandi, the knife was a true gift.
Once the message was sent, I shut off my phone and left it on the nightstand right next to the lamp. Sweeping my eyes over to our bedroom, I couldn’t stop the tears that slipped from my eyes.
It was our bedroom and it was our bed. Theodore and I would sleep in the bed, together. Enemies tried to take him away from me. Take all this away from me. But I’m glad that I fought. I fought to protect the one I love. Fought to protect what’s mine.
It’s not always the man that protects the woman. Both of them protect each other, fight for each other. That was exactly what true love was. And I was lucky to have found it.
Wiping my tears with the back of my hand, I took a couple of deep breaths; then left the bedroom and went to the dining room.
To my family.
To my husband.