"Do you love me?"
"Why do you ask?"
He tickled her.
"Stop it. You're silly. Do you?"
"Of course. You know I do."
"I just like to make sure you still do."
"Why would I ever stop?"
She chewed on the inside of her lip before responding.
"What if...I become ugly or sick?"
"I didn't marry you for your good looks, dearest, and I didn't marry you for your health. I married you for your heart and soul."
"What if we can't have children?"
"I didn't marry you for children, either. I married you because you've got God as your King. Good enough?"
Melissa sighed a happy sigh and leaned her head on Mark's shoulder.
"I'm so glad. Sometimes I worry-"
"That's silly. You shouldn't worry. We know Who holds tomorrow."
"This is true. I wish I could remember that as easily as you seem to. Sometimes I feel so, I don't know, bogged down in my spirit."
"You have to trust Him, Mel. You have to trust me, too."
The look of almost sorrowful gravity in Mark's eyes pained her. She burrowed her face in his neck as she whispered to him.
"Dear heart, I do."
He kissed her forehead. All was well.
***Five weeks later***
"Mark!! Mark! Ohhhh Mark!"
Mark dashed through the hall.
"Mel! Are you-are we?!"
"YES!! You're gonna be a daddy! Oh, Mark!"
He danced her down the hall.
***Two months later***
"I think blue, Mark."
"I think pink."
"We'll have to get some of each. Oh Mark, just look at this! Isn't it the sweetest? I want one."
"Do we need one? It's a bit pricey."
"Well...no, we don't really. But I do love the way this bassinet looks much better than the little crib we looked at."
Mark kissed her cheek.
"Let's get it."
***Four months later***
"What is it, Mel?"
"This doesn't feel right."
Mark snapped to attention.
"What? What doesn't feel right?"
"This. This pain. This isn't what Braxton Hicks are supposed to feel like. It hurts more....I think I'm bleeding, Mark!"
Mark leapt out of bed and rushed into his clothes.
He pulled the car around and ran back inside for Melissa. By now she was moaning almost constantly, in too much pain to move.
He carried her. He carried her to the car, and in the hospital he never left her side.
She blinked at the bright lights.
"Is, did the..."
Quiet tears slipped through closed and weary eyelids.
"Do you still love me?"
"Darling, I will always love you. Trust Him. Trust me."
Quiet, breathless sobs could not be held back. And then,
"Dear heart, I do."
Once again, busy week ahead. :) outings, visits, work, and prep for my trip. :) I would love to hear your thoughts! Especially from those of you that commented on the first edition. :) I added a few paragraphs (two scenes). :)