Disclaimers: This story belongs to me so I don't give permission for it to be posted somewhere else under a different title, change in names or storyline.
Sex: But of course! J
Note: There will likely be somewhat graphic violence in this story, as part of it takes place during war times.
If you'd like to tell me what a wonderful writer I am or that I royally suck, feel free at: XenaNut@hotmail.com .
Bangor International Airport, Bangor ME 1968
Danni was worried that Kate would vibrate right out of her shoes as they watched the plane taxi to the gate. She put an arm around Kate's shoulders, squeezing slightly to give her calm.
"I can't wait to see her," Kate said unnecessarily, bringing up a hand to grab Danni's, which dangled over the front of her shoulder.
"I know. Look, here they come."
Kate saw Megan and Rob walk from the plane towards the stairs that would lead into the airport. She nearly bounced her way to the entrance door, waiting, visually sifting through the other passengers until she saw her little girl. With a squeal of delight, Kate grabbed her daughter in a bone-crushing hug, which was returned with equal vigor.
Danni walked over to the two, accepting a hug from Rob, then both watched patiently as the two women reluctantly drew apart. Danni felt her guilt niggle at her once again, seeing the tears of mother and daughter once again reunited after a month of separation.
"Look at you!" Kate exclaimed, putting her palm on the slight baby bump that had begun to protrude from Megan's midsection. "You weren't kidding when you said on the phone that you could see a change."
Megan smiled then took her mother into another hug. She felt her world slide back into place, as she'd missed her mother terribly, far more than she imagined she would. "I'm so excited we were able to come for Thanksgiving," she said, pulling out of the hug. She looked at her mother, truly looked at her and realized that she'd never seen such a beautiful glow in her mother's eyes before. "You look so beautiful," she complimented, touching her mother's hair, which looked healthy and thick. "I think this crazy cold and snow has done you good." She leaned in close to only her mother would hear her words. "As well as what I suspect is a liberal dose of lovin'."
Kate laughed, feeling like she was on a cloud as she hooked her arm with Megan's and led her daughter over to where Danni and Rob stood. She took Rob into an enthusiastic hug as Megan walked over to Danni.
She looked up into Danni's beautiful and welcoming face. "She looks amazing, Danni," Megan said, taking Danni into a warm, lingering hug. "I think you've taken very good care of her."
"No, I think it's the other way around," Danni said, patting her stomach. "Your mom can cook like nobody I've ever seen."
Megan threw her head back and laughed, thrilled that she felt just as comfortable around Danni now as she had the first time she'd met her. "Yes, she does have a wicked internal recipe deck."
"It doesn't look like I'm the only one who has noticed a bit of a gut bump." Danni looked down at Megan's belly, a wide grin on her face. She couldn't help but feel elated, not just for Megan and Rob, but for herself and Kate as well.
"Yes," Megan agreed, placing a hand on her emerging belly, which had become habit. "She's coming along."
Danni raised a brow. "You already know the sex?"
"I already know the sex," she grinned.
"Ah. I see. Well," Danni said to the group. "Are we ready to head out?"
Megan walked with Danni, her hand tucked into the bend of her arm as they headed out of the airport, leaving Kate and walk and talk with Rob. Megan glanced up at what, her stepmother? She had no clue what Danni represented, but it didn't matter. Her mother seemed beyond happy, and that was what she'd wanted.
"I have to say, it was not groovy flying into this snow," Megan commented. "Even so, I also have to say that it'll be beyond groovy to have this colder weather. I'll tell you, Danni, being pregnant makes you unbelievably hot."
Danni laughed and instinctively swept her arm over Megan's shoulders in a gesture that was undeniably maternal. "Well kiddo, you're in the right place, then."
Kate watched the interaction between the two and couldn't help but nearly burst into tears at the sight. The two people she loved most in the world seemed to genuinely get along and like each other.
"Oh my god!" Megan crowed as they climbed out of Danni's Jeep. "This place is amazing!"
"Wow, bitchin'," Rob agreed, climbing out after his wife.
"Come on in, guys," Kate gushed, excited to show off her and Danni's home, while Danni grabbed the couple's luggage out of the back of the Jeep. "I have to warn you guys; just inside this door are two very excited huskies."
"I can hear them," Megan said, excited at the prospect of meeting Healy and Anicka, which her mother had told her about during many of their nightly phone calls.
Kate opened the door and immediately pushed the dogs back, as she didn't want them to jump all over Megan for fear of them knocking her down or trampling her. "Get back, guys! Get back! Calm down!" It took a moment but finally Healy and Anicka calmed, though they whimpered as they knew there were new people to greet. "Megan, Rob, come in."
The two entered the cabin, Megan's eyes growing huge at the sight of the two large, beautiful dogs. "Oh my god! They're gorgeous!"
"They're our babies," Kate grunted, keeping a tight rein on the dogs' collars. "They won't hurt you, they just get super excited."
Megan walked over to the dogs and knelt down in front of them. "Which is which?"
"This is Healy," Kate said, indicating the dog in her right hand, "And this is Anicka."
"She's the one who follows you around like a little shadow, right?" Megan asked, holding her hands out to the dogs to sniff.
"Yeah," Danni supplied, stepping in behind Rob. "Anicka doesn't like anybody, even me sometimes. But man, she fell in love with Kate."
"That's because I spoil her rotten," Kate said to Danni, a twinkle in her eyes.
"Uh huh," Danni muttered good-naturedly. She continued on through the cabin to drop off the luggage in Rob and Megan's room.
After the greeting of the dogs, Kate continued her tour of the cabin, Rob dropping off once the talk got into decor and furnishings. Instead, he found Danni, who had made her way to the kitchen to get going on dinner for everyone.
"Can I help?" he asked.
Danni was surprised by the offer, but wasn't going to turn it down. "Sure, Rob. If you'll grab that tray of veggies from the fridge and start cutting them for the salad, that would be great."
"You got it." Rob did as he was asked, both working silently for a moment before Rob glanced over at Danni, whose back was to him as she mixed the meat mixture for the meatloaf with her hands. "Danni?"
Rob chewed on his bottom lip for a moment, not sure how to begin. "As you know, I leave in a couple weeks."
Danni felt her stomach drop, as she knew what was coming. She could hear the fear in his voice and it brought back a fear that can't be explained to anyone; it simply had to be felt and experienced to understand. "Yes." She kept her attention on what she was doing, as she figured Rob probably didn't want an audience for his fear.
"When you had to ship out, were you scared?"
Danni stopped what she was doing and grabbed a towel to wipe her hands as she turned to face him. "Do you want the truth?" she asked softly.
After a long pause and deep breath, Rob nodded. "Yeah."
"It's the scariest thing I've ever done, but the proudest moment of my life." She let that sink in before she continued. "I know this conflict is much different than what I went to fight - far more political and more b.s. - but you're still serving your country, and you're helping to ensure that your wife and unborn child will continue to live in the most powerful country on earth. That's something to be really proud of Rob."
Rob was quiet for a moment as he looked down at the knife that he held in his hand. "I'm scared out of my mind, Danni. I'm really regretting my decision, now." He looked up at Danni with tortured eyes. "Don't tell Megan that. I want her to think I'm strong."
"You are strong, Rob." She walked over to him and reached out to squeeze his arm. "You did the right thing. Forget all the mumbo jumbo about patriotism and all that. You would likely be drafted and sent to the front lines in one of those godforsaken jungles."
Rob let out a heavy breath and nodded. "I keep trying to tell myself that."
"Just think: you're a young guy. You've got your entire life ahead of you - you and Megan. You're doing your duty and then you're done, free to move on and create a life for yourself." She smiled, taking him in a quick hug. "I know it's easier said than done, right?"
"Yeah, but you did it."
"I served for nine years, Rob."
"I know I couldn't do that," he grinned.
Danni returned it. "Well, I guess it's a good thing you don't have to, huh?"
Rob gave her a hug of his own then let her go, returning his attention to his vegetables. "Thanks, Danni."
"Any time," she said, continuing to mix her meatloaf.
Later that night, Kate lay on top of Danni, the two exchanging slow, lazy kisses and caresses, as they had been doing for more than an hour. Danni hated the fact that she and Kate both wore t-shirts and panties, but understood Kate's reasoning - for the most part. So, she ran her hands up under Kate's shirt, reveling in the feel of the smooth, warm skin of Kate's back.
Kate hummed in contentment as she pulled away from Danni, just enough to look down at her. "God, I love kissing you."
"I certainly hope so or we're doomed," Danni grinned, running her hands out from under Kate's shirt and over her satin-clad behind where she rested them. "I gotta get some, or I get cranky."
Kate laughed and swatted playfully at Danni. "So I've seen. I don't think I've ever seen anyone with the sex drive you have."
Danni raised her brows. "Are you complaining?"
"Oh, no," Kate purred, initiating a quick but deep kiss. "I'm not complaining at all. In fact, you've got me spoiled." She rested her cheek on an upturned palm. "I'm not entirely sure how I'm going to get through the next few days without it."
"It?" Danni questioned.
"You know, it," Kate whispered. For some reasons, the moment her 22 year old, married, pregnant daughter had stepped into the house, Kate became the mother of a 5 year old again.
Danni laughed, completely amused. "Honey, Megan is down the hall, not sitting across the room."
"Are you making fun of me?" Kate asked, a brow raised.
"Yes, pretty much. So, what is it? What do you not know how you'll get by without?"
"Are you seriously going to make me say it?" When Kate got the vigorous nod from Danni, she rolled her eyes. "Fine." She leaned in and whispered in Danni's ear in the most sexy voice she could muster. "I'm going to miss touching your naked body. I'm going to miss rubbing up against you, and I'm going to miss having you inside me." She did her best not to blush, as she was not one to get overly sexually wordy, but she was determined to pay Danni back for her teasing.
Danni felt her toes curl at the soft purr in her ear, her hands tightening on Kate's behind. "I'll miss it, too," she whimpered.
Kate threw her head back and laughed. "See?"
Danni chuckled. "Yeah, yeah. You know, we don't have to suddenly turn into nuns because she's here, baby."
"There is no way in hell I'm going to make love when my baby is just down the hall," Kate said stubbornly.
Danni smiled and placed a kiss on Kate's chin. "Okay. We'll see how you're doing in a couple nights."
Kate hugged Danni close then moved off of her and cuddled up against her, head lying on Danni's shoulder. She sighed in contentment when she felt Danni's arms hold her tightly against her. "I'm so worried for Megan."
"Why?" Danni asked, running her fingers absently through thick blonde hair.
"Because I know what she's about to go through." Kate lifted her head to look down at Danni. "When you shipped out, I thought I was going to die." She caressed the side of Danni's face, her gaze locked onto Danni's. "It was the worst day of my life." Her gaze drifted off into a past that she hadn't thought of in many years. Hours upon hours of crying and locking herself in her bedroom. "There were times I wasn't sure I was going to get through it," she said softly, bringing her gaze back to understanding eyes. "And I wasn't even pregnant. This is going to kill her."
"Rob talked to me about it tonight," Danni said, again running her fingers through Kate's hair. "Not about Megan, but he's scared to death. He begged me not to tell Megan."
"Why wouldn't he want Megan to know he's afraid?"
Danni shrugged a shoulder. "He said because he doesn't want to seem weak, but I know it's because he doesn't want this to be even harder on Megan, knowing that he's so afraid and doesn't want to go." She pulled Kate down to rest against her again. "Megan needs to prepare herself, baby; we all do. I was in the safest place I could have been, working with the SeeBees. Rob won't be as fortunate. He could definitely be in an even more vulnerable spot, but he's still in danger. This is a nasty war being fought out there."
Brenda Lee's ten year old hit, Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree played on the record player, along with backup singers, Danni, Kate and Megan. The seven foot tree had been cut down and dragged into the living room, and now the three women decked the halls.
The living room was full of opened boxes, Kate thrilled that she'd decided to bring all of the holiday decorations with her. All day she and Megan had regaled Danni with tales of each and every ornament: when they got it, where they got it, what grade Megan was in when she made this or that ornament, and the fact that Megan was shocked her mother still had every single one of her grade school crafts.
"Who wants more special egg nog?" Kate called out from the kitchen, able to hear Megan and Danni laughing in the next room.
Though it wasn't Christmas quite yet, Rob would be allowed to visit for a short time as he had finished basic and would soon be headed to San Diego for more training before he was shipped out in a month. He was set to arrive in Bangor the following day, and Megan was determined to have a holiday wonderland inside to match the winter wonderland outside, for him.
"Ohhh, count me in!" Megan enthused, almost skipping into the kitchen, her long hair slapping against her back.
Kate smirked. "Careful my love, the little miss will not be happy with you." She placed her hand on her daughter's growing belly.
"Tell me about it. Your spicy chili kept her up for hours last night."
Kate smiled, handing her five month pregnant daughter a second cup of the thick egg nog, a touch of rum added. "Here you go, sweetie," she said, giving her daughter a peck on the cheek. Kate honestly could never remember being happier. The only thing that would have made the day even more perfect would have been if Rob could have been there. At least perfection would start the following day.
"Where's mine?" Danni asked, walking up behind Kate and wrapping her arms around her middle.
"You don't drink," Kate reminded, placing her hands over Danni's
"You two are worse than rabbits," Megan teased, laughing when her mother blushed. Danni met Megan's gaze from over Kate's shoulder and wiggled her eyebrows at her, making Megan laugh even more.
"I just hope me and Rob are still so 'active' when we're old," Megan taunted, turning and sauntering back into the living room.
"Hey!" Danni called out, growling playfully at Megan's laughter. She nuzzled Kate's neck. "Can you believe such bad language coming out of the mouth of an angel?"
"Angel," Kate smirked. "Not my kid!" she called out loud enough for Megan to hear, which earned even more laughter.
Kate walked arm in arm with Megan around the property, both heavily bundled up. It was one of the nicer days in the past couple weeks, but it was still bitterly cold. The sun was out and the snowfall had stopped, so Megan decided it was a good time to go explore a bit, and talk to her mom. Healy and Anicka ran up ahead, playing and barking in the snow together.
"It's so amazing out here," she remarked, breathing in the cold, crisp air. "So incredibly different than San Jose."
"Isn't it, though?" Kate agreed, proud to show her daughter her new home and all that went with it. "I truly love it here, Megan. Granted, I've only been here a few months, but I don't know," she shrugged. "Somehow hit's already home."
"It's home because you're here with Danni," Megan offered, smiling at her mother, who returned it.
"I'd follow her to the moon and back."
"And I think she would have left Maine and moved back to California if you'd asked her to." Megan was quiet for a few moments until she got to what she wanted to say. "I've given things a lot of thought in the last month, especially with being here with you guys for Thanksgiving a month ago, and being here now."
Kate tried not to get her hopes up too high as she listened to what her daughter had to say. She stayed quiet and attentive.
"As you know, I'll be heading back to California with Rob while he goes through his training in San Diego. At least San Jose is only a couple hours away, so I'll still be able to see him from time to time."
Kate nodded. "Yes, you will."
"But, after he leaves..." Megan stopped their progress and made sure she had her mother's full attention. "Mom, I want to take you and Danni up on your offer. Well, Danni's offer, technically."
Kate studied her daughter's eyes, trying to read if she was hearing what she thought she was hearing. "Are you saying you want to move here?" she asked, her heart beginning to pound with hope.
Megan nodded. "Yeah. I don't want to be away from you, and definitely not with this little one." She placed her hand over her protruding belly, visible even with the bulky winter coat she wore. "And, I'd like to make a new start for Rob to come home to."
Megan didn't even fully have the words out of her mouth before she was grabbed in a tight hug, Kate nearly in tears of relief. "Oh, sweetie," she breathed.
"That is if the offer is still open, considering how I acted when you offered it," Megan said into the hug, her eyes closed as she allowed herself to become lost in the comfort that only the hug from her mother could bring.
"Honey," Kate said, pulling away just enough to look in Megan's face, her hands on Megan's shoulders. "That offer will be open to you forever. Believe it or not, Danni truly loves you guys."
"I know she does," Megan admitted. She brought up a hand to swipe at the sudden tears the came to her eyes. "God, this hormone crap sucks," she laughed, making her mother smile in remembered sympathy. "But, I do know she does. It's almost like everything just fits together now, you know? You and Dad were always so unhappy, and it really made things difficult sometimes: the arguments or times of the silent treatment from one or the other of you. I don't know, it's such an amazing change, the way you and Danni interact. It's like she's been her the whole time."
It was Kate's turn to tear up. "You have no idea how happy it makes me to hear you say that. I would never try and shove anyone into your Dad's place in your heart, but I so badly wanted you to accept Danni, and her to accept you."
"She's wonderful, Mom. Really and truly wonderful. Rob thinks she's the grooviest thing since the Stones."
Kate laughed. "Great. I'm sure Danni would just love to be up there with Mick Jagger."
"There are worst things in life, you know."
Kate linked their arms again and got them walking. "The four of us should sit down and talk this out, decide where you guys want to go and see what's available for you."
The only light in the living room was from the fire in the massive fireplace and the seven foot Christmas tree, lit and decorated. After a day of opening a mountain of gifts and exchanging hugs, kisses and "thank yous", Kate and Danni lay cuddled together on the couch. Rob and Megan had gone to bed more than an hour before. Kate, who lay between Danni's spread legs with her back to her chest, readjusted herself so she was curled up sideways against Danni.
Danni enfolded Kate a little tighter against her, a contented sigh released atop a golden head. "I think that's the most beautiful Christmas tree I've ever seen."
Kate nodded. "I'd have to agree. I just can't get over how huge it is. We never had one so big before."
Danni began to run her fingers through Kate's soft hair; it was one of her favorite things about Kate. "This is the first time I've ever put up a Christmas tree in my adult life," she admitted.
Kate pulled away just enough to look into Danni's face. "Are you serious?"
"Very. I never had a reason to, before."
"But, you do celebrate Christmas, right?" Kate asked, just this side of offended, as Christmas was her favorite time of year.
Danni grinned and nodded. "But, that was usually because Allison would force me to go to Wayne."
Kate smiled. "Well, you'd better get used to celebrating it at home, because I turn into a great big kid at Christmas."
Danni placed a soft kiss on Kate's lips. "I'm game. I also have one more gift for you. I thought about giving it to you earlier, when we were all opening gifts, but I wanted it to just be us."
"I'm intrigued." Kate began to move away but was stopped by a hand to her back.
"No, stay here." Danni reached behind her to a spot on the end table where'd she'd hidden the small, wrapped box behind the lamp. She reached back around and handed it to Kate. "Merry Christmas, baby."
Giddy like a child, Kate took the beautifully wrapped box of gold and silver paper with matching bow, into her hands. "Thank you." She gave Danni a quick kiss then got around to the business of opening the package, careful not to tear the gorgeous paper.
Danni was amused, but also sat watching with her stomach in knots. She prayed Kate would like it.
Once the paper was gone, Kate was left with a blue velvet box, which made her heart stop in its tracks before it began to pound double time. She didn't want to assume, but she knew that was a ring box. Taking a silent breath, she opened it, the tiny hinges squeaking slightly.
A loud gasp escaped Kate's lips when she looked upon the gorgeous ring inside. It was yellow gold with a gorgeous diamond cut into a hard at its center, two smaller emeralds on either side. "Oh, Danni," she whispered, looking to Danni for explanation.
"You know, technically we never got divorced," Danni murmured, taking the ring from the box that Kate held in shaking hands. She took Kate's left hand in gentle fingers and slipped the ring into place on her ring finger. "I figured almost twenty-six year was enough time to renew our vows, which I still mean with all my heart." Suddenly she felt a nervous tremor pass through her. "So, Kate Hannigan, if you'll have me, I want to spend the rest of my life with you."
Without hesitation and with tears of joy in her eyes, Kate turned and threw herself at Danni, pulling her against her in a painfully tight hug. "Yes, yes, god, yes!"
Danni let out a sigh of relief as she held Kate tightly to her.
"Only one thing though," Kate said, pulling back from Danni to look into her eyes. "I don't want to be a Hannigan ever again. Megan is now a Jamison, and I want to be a Felts, just like I should have always been. I only want your legacy, nobody else's."
Touched beyond speech, Danni took Kate in a deeply passionate kiss. "Come on," she whispered against Kate's lips. "I want to make love to my wife." She felt Kate's mouth open, assuming it was in protest. "We can be quiet."
San Diego, CA 1969
The harbor was bustling with sailors, family and friends, the massive ship the men would be boarding awaiting them with a plank greeting. Danni stared up at that ship, different from the one she'd boarded in 1943, but it brought about the same feelings of fear and anxiety. It was surreal that once again Kate stood by her side, her arm wrapped protectively around her shoulders. In truth, she needed the contact far more than she figured Kate did.
Kate was filled with her own mixture of emotions as she watched her daughter and husband saying their final goodbyes. They held onto each other - clung to each other, really - just as she and Danni had done the day she'd left.
"It's so strange," she said softly, "being here." She looked up at Danni, catching her gaze. "Brings back a lot of memories."
"So, so many," Danni agreed. She wished so badly she had the freedom to hold Kate like she had as Daniel Felts. Would they ever be able to live freely and openly? "Back then, Megan wasn't even a glimmer in those pretty green eyes."
Kate smiled and nodded, turning back to her daughter and Rob. "We had no idea what was in store for us then; so young and naive."
"At least Megan will have you to help her through this, baby," Danni said quietly, so nobody would overhear the endearment.
Megan felt like she was about to die as she was held by her husband, and held him in turn. She was terrified that this would be the last time she ever saw him. She was trying desperately - and unsuccessfully - to keep the tears in.
"It's going to be okay, babe," Rob whispered into her hair. "I'll be back sooner than you can blink an eye."
Megan smiled up at him with tear-filled eyes. She knew he was trying to lessen the blow, but nothing he could say would help, unless he flat out said they were moving to Canada and he wasn't going.
"I love you," she whispered, leaning up to kiss him. "I'll be waiting for you when you get back."
"Stay close to Kate and Danni, okay?" he asked, brushing the backs of his fingers along her jaw. "It'll make me feel a lot better, knowing that you're being taken care of and looked after."
Megan nodded. "I will." She accepted a final, tight hug before stepping away, knowing he wanted to say his goodbyes to her mom and Danni, as well as his own family, who stood nearby.
Kate took Rob in a painfully tight embrace. "You be safe out there," she demanded into the hug. "You've got a baby to come home to."
Rob nodded. He'd never been extremely close to his own mother, and Kate had definitely stepped in to be the mother figure he'd always craved. He pulled out of the hug and accepted the kiss on the cheek she gave him.
"I love you, Rob. We'll be praying for you."
"I love you, too Kate." He smiled at her, looking so handsome in his uniform with a freshly-shaved head. He looked so vastly different than the easy-going, free-loving hippie he'd been but a few short months before.
Rob turned to Danni. "Here we go, huh?" Danni said softly, pulling him into a quick hug. She held him at arm's length. "Be brave and write lots of letters. That's the key to getting through this, Rob. Lots and lots of letters. Megan will respond, and so will we."
Rob nodded, taking several deep breaths before moving on to his parents. Danni moved back over to where Kate stood with Megan, all three watching the interaction. Danni reached around Kate to stroke Megan's hair, giving her a comforting smile. To Danni's surprise, Megan moved in between the two women, an arm around each of their waists.
Megan and Rob had been given the weekend before he left to spend together, so Danni and Kate had put them up in a beautiful beachside resort to enjoy and relax. While they were away, Kate and Danni had packed up Megan and Rob's life in the house they'd been renting in San Jose, wanting to spare Megan the stress and emotional task. Everything had been boxed and packed away for a moving truck to deliver to the new house Megan and Rob had picked out in Maine, a house that was actually one of Danni's holdings and not Allison's.
The flight back across the country was quiet and somber, Megan sleeping the entire way with her head resting on her mother's shoulder. Once they got back to Munson, Megan immediately went to the bedroom she'd used with Rob and promptly fell asleep.
"How is she doing?" Danni asked when Kate entered their bedroom after checking on Megan.
"She's asleep," Kate sighed, closing the bedroom door and walking over to the bed to push the covers down on her side. She quickly undressed down to her panties and tugged on a t-shirt, mirroring what Danni wore.
Danni was already in bed and patted the mattress next to her, inviting Kate to scoot over to her side, which she did. Danni pulled Kate to her, then on top of her, making Kate gasp slightly in surprise.
"Hi," Danni grinned, her hands resting on Kate's lower back. The memories of the morning had brought her back to a time she didn't want to think about, and to a time that was the beginning of the end for her and Kate. It made her heart hurt, and she needed Kate close to her right now. She cupped the back of Kate's head and pulled her down for a deep, exploratory kiss, which Kate returned.
Kate sighed into the kiss, able to sense Danni's need for her, which she largely shared. She ran her hand down from Danni's shoulder over her breast and to the hem of her t-shirt then back up under the thin material, running her fingernails lightly over the smooth, sensitive skin. Finally she reached Danni's naked breast and continued the light torture, teasing the tip of a hardening nipple with light scratches.
Danni moaned softly, her hands running down to cup Kate's behind, squeezing. "Kate," she sighed, the need evident in her voice.
"I'm here, baby," Kate whispered, moving from Danni's mouth to her neck. She cupped Danni's breast, slowly rubbing her palm across the hardened nipple.
Danni hissed, her hands tightening in their hold on Kate's flesh. She was about to slip her hands under the satin of Kate's panties when a soft knock sounded on the bedroom door. She froze, looking up at Kate as Kate looked down at her, eyes wide in guilt-ridden surprise.
Kate quickly climbed off the bed and hurried to the door, pulling it open to see Megan standing out in the darkened hallway. "Are you okay, sweetie?" she asked, forcing her breathing to a normal cadence.
"I'm sorry to bother you, Mom, but I kinda... um," Megan chewed on her bottom lip, feeling foolish. "Can you... would you mind..."
"I'll be right there, sweetie. Let me get my robe."
"Okay," Megan blew out, relieved.
Kate closed the door softly and hurried to the closet to grab her robe.
"Everything okay?" Danni asked, doing her best to keep disappointed irritation out of her voice, her body thrumming.
"I'm sorry, baby," Kate said, moving around to Danni's side of the bed. She leaned down and gave her a quick kiss. "She needs me."
"It's okay," Danni, said, though it was obvious to both that she was hurting.
Kate smiled. "You're the one who said you wanted kids."
Danni gave her a lascivious grin. "No, I said I wanted to practice trying to get pregnant."
Kate chuckled and kissed her again. "I'll be back."
Left alone, Danni groaned, grabbing Kate's pillow and tugging it over her face.
Kate walked into Megan's bedroom, the girl already sitting on the side of her bed. "I'm really sorry," Megan said, her eyes heavy and red-rimmed. "I didn't mean to bother you guys; hopefully I didn't wake you up."
"It's okay, sweetie. Come on, lay down with me." Kate opened her arm for her daughter to cuddle up against her, just like she used to do when she was a young girl.
Megan was so grateful to have her mother there and quickly moved into her arms. She felt silly and like a child, but needed her all the same. She chuckled as she wasn't able to get near as close as she used to, her belly keeping her slightly at bay.
Kate combed her fingers through long hair, reveling in the soft thickness. "You definitely got your dad's hair," she commented. "I wish mine was half as thick as yours."
"What are you talking about? You have beautiful hair," Megan said, settling in, her head resting on her mother's shoulder.
"Not like yours."
They were silent for a long moment before Megan spoke. "How did you get through it?"
"By keeping very busy," Kate answered honestly. "Luckily I was going to school, so I drowned myself in my studies. We wrote constantly, too; that helps immensely. I prayed a lot. I cried a lot," she said softly, remembering all the hours spent alone in her bedroom or at the university library. "You have to hold on, sweetie. It never goes away until they're safe at home, but it does get easier."
"I feel like a part of me is gone, you know? Rob and I haven't spent more than two days apart in four years until he left for basic," Megan said, her voice shaky. "And now with the baby on the way, I feel so alone."
"I know, sweetie," Kate whispered, her heart aching for her daughter, and there was nothing she could do about it. "You're not alone; Danni and I are here for you every step of the way, as well as Rob's parents. Bill and Gretta are welcome here anytime, or if you want to go back to San Jose to see them, just let me know."
"No," Megan said, shaking her head lightly. "I have no desire to see them. I'll keep in touch of course, but that's about it." More silence, then, "Is Danni pissed that I woke you guys up?"
"No," Kate said, kissing the top of Megan's head, an evil smirk crossing her lips for a moment before it disappeared. She could only imagine how Danni was feeling at the moment. Somehow, she didn't think "pissed" was part of it. "You should get some rest, sweetheart. All this stress isn't good for the baby."
Megan nodded with a heavy yawn. She pulled away from her mother and turned to her side, back facing Kate. "Will you stay with me until I fall asleep?" she asked, her voice already heavy and tired.
"Of course." Kate knew what the position meant. Ever since Megan was a baby, Kate had put her back to sleep after a nightmare or a bad day with back scratches. She turned to her own side and brought a hand up, lightly running lazy patterns all over Megan's back through the thin material of Megan's sleeping gown. Megan sighed and murmured something nonsensical, making her mother smile.
After twenty minutes of this, Kate knew Megan was sound asleep. Once again she'd worked her magic. She stopped the scratches and pushed up to an elbow so she could lean over and place a soft kiss on her daughter's cheek. "Sleep well, my baby girl."
As quietly as she could, she crawled out of bed, closing the door softly behind her. She made a visit to the restroom then to her own bedroom, where Danni was asleep, lying on her back. Never taking her eyes off Danni's still form, Kate stripped out of the robe, her t-shirt and panties, then climbed in bed and over to Danni.
She laid a trail of soft kisses alone Danni's exposed neck, as Danni lay with her head tilted away from Kate. As the kisses slowed, she brought a hand up to slide up under Danni's t-shirt, resuming its position covering Danni's right breast.
Danni came to wakefulness with a startled gasp, followed by a moan as her nipple was rolled between two fingers. "Is she okay?" she sighed, eyes closing in pleasure.
"She's fine," Kate murmured against Danni's neck, moving her way to her mouth. "Now shush and let me love you."
Kate took her time, worshipping Danni's body as she undressed her, wanting to show Danni how much she loved her, as well as to alleviate any fears or memories of a past gone wrong. She brought Danni to a slow, yet powerful release with her mouth, refusing to let Danni reciprocate.
"This was for you, baby," she whispered, climbing back up Danni's body and delivering a deep kiss.
Still out of breath from her intense experience, Danni pulled Kate to her, never wanting to let her go.