“I’m sorry say again.” I said in shock. He closed his eyes taking a deep breath.
“Bailey I have a 5 month old son.” He opened his eyes to look at me as I stared down at the picture in my hands. I looked up at him unsure what to say. What do you say to that? ‘Hey I think I’m falling in love with you, but you have a baby so I’m not sure any more’?
“Why didn’t you tell me before?” I felt the tears forming in my eyes. They weren’t anger, or disgust. They were of betrayal. He didn’t tell me. We spent 5 days together. He barely left my side, yet he didn’t tell me he had a baby. A 5 month, 1 month old at the time.
“I didn’t know how to tell you.” He said closing his eyes, trying to hide the tears.
“How about ‘Bailey I have a son.’” I said crossing my arms trying to show my anger, but the tears rolled down my face betraying me. He reached out for me but dropped his hand half way looking down.
“I was scared. I had this weird feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I even looked your way, even thought of you. You invaded my every thought Bailey. You stole my heart Bailey. Damn it I’m in love with you.” I looked up at him before I broke down and let my tears roll down my face.
“You should have told me.” I said wiping my tears away roughly from my cheeks.
“I know but I was scared, terrified even.” I watched the tear roll down his face mindlessly. He ignored it like it wasn’t even there.
“Scared of what Taylor?” I put my hand on his shoulder. He opened his eyes to look at me. The whites of his eyes were red, either from crying or because we was tired. Or both.
“I was scared of what you would think.” I looked back at the picture in my hand. It was a perfect picture of Taylor in the hospital holding a beautiful little baby in his strong arms. It was like the baby belonged there. In his father’s arms sleeping. Not a care in the world.
“Why?” He looked up at me confused.
“Why didn’t you stay with them the last week? Why were you with me?” He gave a short laugh.
“She kicked me out. She said I wasn’t the father that Fin should have. She wanted someone who was there when he needed him. Not off….” He trailed off. I rubbed his arm as more tears fell.
“You can tell me it’s alright.” I whispered moving closer to him. He took my hand in his.
“She said he needed someone who wasn’t off playing soldier.” I looked at him as a tear rolled down my face.
“Taylor…” I pulled him into my arms as he started to full on cry. Whoever she was, she was a cold heart bitch. I barely know her but I know she is.
“She wanted me to quiet. Just drop everything and do what she wanted me to do. She said I had to grow up and be a man.” He held me close as he cried all his pain out. I could tell he had been bottling this up. “She wanted me to stop being a marine and marry her.” I looked at him.
“Did you?” He shook his head.
“I told no. I told her I need to think about everything, see if I want to truly be with her before I proposed to her.” I moved so I was close enough so our knees where touching. I leaned my head on his shoulder.
“I bet she didn’t take that very well.” He shook his head.
“She hated it. She said I made the mistake of getting her pregnant. I had to man up and take care of them.” He laid his head on top of mine.
“I don’t see you as the person to just abandon a girl you got pregnant.”
“I didn’t I stood by her the whole time. I let her bitch at me about not being good enough. I let her bitch about how she was getting fat. I let her bitch about how Skylar was ‘being mean’ to her. I stood by her for 9 months. A whole 9 months of agony.”
“So you didn’t propose?” He shook his head.
“I couldn’t. She just wasn’t the girl I wanted to spend my life with. I couldn’t stomach being with her for so long. But when Finley was born. I just…. I was so confused.” I looked up at him.
“Why were you confused?”
“Because here I held the perfect baby in my hands. He was perfect. He looked so much like me. He made those 9 months so worth it. So worth dealing with her. He had those little baby hands and feet. He loved to just lay with me. Oh how I miss him.” He closed his eyes and started to cry.
“What happened?” I asked rubbing his good leg that was near me.
“I had been home for 9 months almost 10. I was lucky I was home that long. I knew a deployment was coming. It had to be. So when I got my orders I knew I was lucky. Only 4 months, is what we dream of. But She, she didn’t like it.” He took a deep breath pulling me closer to him. “She told me I better get out of it if I were wanted to see my son again. She was using him as bait. She wanted me out of the corps; she was and true was trying to ruin my life.” He closed his eyes pressing his head to mine. “I didn’t understand why, why she was so adamant to get me out.
“All I wanted was my son. But when she found out I was going, that I wasn’t going to stay behind with her. She flipped. She kicked me out, said she never wanted to see me again. She never was going to let me hold my son, see him, or even touch him. She wanted me to give her money or she was going to call the cops and get me arrested and put in prison for the rest of my life.”
“She,” I looked up at him. “She is a bitch. How did you even meet her?” He gave me a short laugh. There was no humor in it though. It sounded so odd coming out of his lips. It didn’t belong there.
“That’s the funny thing. I met her at a bar when I first got home from my last deployment. I was drunk and I slept with her. I guess it goes from there.” He looked at me.
“Continue with your story. I’m listening.” He sighed looking ahead of himself blankly.
“So she kicked me out. It wasn’t even like I was living there. I was still here with Skylar. But we had bought a bigger apartment, so Finley had a place to stay when he came over. I didn’t see a point in life anymore. The only one I loved was my son and I wasn’t allowed to see him. I was thinking. I was planning. I was going to go away, but I wasn’t going to come back, other than in a body bag.” Just the thought. The cold blackness of a body bag. The thought of Taylor in one. The images of it started to haunt my mind. I closed my eyes as I broke down. Taylor held me tighter. “Shh I’m sorry.”
“Why would you want to kill yourself?” I cried hugging him, the fear of losing him so close.
“It was before I met you. I didn’t want to endanger my son. She said she would have hurt him. But then I went to this dinner. There was this Blondie who was my waitress who was perfect in every way shape and form. She changed my mind because I just kept running into her. Then I spent the best 5 days of my life with her. Those 5 days I had more fun than I had in months. She made everything better. She stole something from me though.” I looked up at him my eye lashes still wet from my little break down.
“What did she steal?” He nuzzled into my neck.
“My heart.” I closed my eyes enjoying the feel of his skin on mine.
“I love you Taylor. I love you.” I whispered making him look up.
“Good because I fell for you the 3rd day we spent together.” He leaned forward to kiss me.
“Taylor?” I asked after a little while.
“You said she was going to hurt…him. What did you mean?” He opened his eyes to look at me.
“She said she would beat him, till be was black and blue. Or till he stopped breathing. She said she didn’t care. That he was nothing to her. She was just doing what her mother told her to do. Kill him.” He whispered. I looked at him in disbelief. I stood up suddenly walking to the door grabbing my shoes. “Bailey what are you doing?” I looked over at him throwing him his shoes.
“We are going to get your Son.”
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