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[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow hadn’t thought about the fact that she could have lost her own life…she only cared about the one she had inside of her and the fact that she had lost it. She had played over the moment she told him over and over again and it was supposed to be a happy moment. None of this was supposed to happen. If she had stayed away from the stable…
It took her some time to finally allow the crying to subside but that was more because she was completely exhausted, and she had no energy remaining to allow herself to cry. She closed her eyes as Justin pressed a kissed against her forehead, nodding when he suggested that she needed to bathe. She pushed against him so that she could use him to help her up and looked around the room, almost as though she had forgotten what she was supposed to be doing and looked back at the bed. There was so much blood.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe lowered himself onto the bed next to her so he could get a better look at both children and he was ecstatic. [b “They are both so beautiful, just like their mother.”] He said, this time leaning in to kiss her lips. He smiled and carefully manoeuvred as she swapped their children, so he could get a better look at his daughter.
[b “I do not know why we had not discussed names until now.”] He said, partly amused. [b “Do you have any ideas what to call these little beauties?”] He asked, looking over them once more, unable to get enough of them and when she mentioned two names he couldn’t think of anything more perfect.
[b” Fletcher and Juliet.”] He said with a firm nod as he placed a kiss on his daughter’s head.
Justin held her close,
“Shhh, you don’t have to. You don’t need to.” He assured her. Seeing newborns didn’t seem like much fun right then and it wouldn’t be fair for Anastasia and Jobe to have their moment lost in grief. Besides, he just wanted to hold Willow until she slept peacefully no matter how long it took. He’d hold her all night if he could.
He watched her with soft eyes,
“Don’t apologise. Don’t. I’m just glad that you’re alive, Willow you could have died.” He whispered and cupped her face, kissing her forehead gently and just kept her company with soft comforts.
“You should bathe, and you need to drink.” He whispered to her. He knew this was hard and honestly he was a wreck but he needed to make sure Willow was alright.
“Hey.” Anastasia greeted him and the sight of Jobe with their son in his arms was enough to melt the coldest of hearts. She felt his kiss and heard his words.
“We have two, a son and a daughter.” She whispered quietly to him.
“You’re a father, Jobe. We’re parents.” She murmured, looking to their children. She could hardly believe it and all the pain and suffering she had gone through was forgotten in an instant.
She seemed to forget everything else.
“Hey, little girl, meet your father.” She whispered softly as she took her son and passed over their daughter.
“We haven’t even thought of names.” She laughed a little as she watched her son squirming in the blankets.
“Jobe-“ She looked to him and smiled softly.
“What about Fletcher and Juliet.” She suggested and looked to the little boy in her arms. They seemed like the perfect names and a fitting tribute to their friends.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow was full of sorrow. She was sure that nothing would be able to console her and when she heard the sound of Justin’s voice, confused she sobbed harder. She had not even had the chance to share the news with him and this was not how she imagined things to happen. [b “I’m so sorry Justin.”] She said through her tears. [b “I’m so sorry.”] Even though Justin held her and comforted her, the apologies didn’t stop. She had not protected their child and she knew that she had lost the baby and the next day or so would be rough on her body. None of that mattered though. She was distraught.
The sound of crying only added to her distress. Willow had not been there for Anastasia and now she would never be able to make up for missing the birth of their child because she had lost her own and regardless of the irrationality of her emotions, she felt guilty. [b “I can’t…I can’t.”]
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] The sound of cries alerted Jobe to the fact that their baby had arrived and while he was still concerned for Willow, he had no time to think about that now. He spun around when the door opened, and the doctor appeared, holding a baby boy. His heart hammered against his chest and he smiled widely upon seeing the small infant. [b “I have a son…”] He said as he looked down at the new-born in his arms and entered the room. He could barely tear his eyes away until the woman mentioned his daughter. [b “Wait…we have two?”] He asked, searching Anastasia’s arms for his daughter.
He smiled once more, a tear forming in the corner of his eye as he saw his wife holding their daughter. He leaned down to kiss forehead. [b “I am so proud of you.”] He said as he looked over his daughter. There was no way he could ruin this moment by telling Anastasia why Willow had not been here.
Anastasia was beside herself with worry but her instinct kicked in and she had a job to do, as a mother. It was the most painful and emotional moments of her life. It seemed like it would never come to an end.
By the end of her ordeal, there was not one, but two tiny infants. The squealing of their cries a relief to her as they were alright because they were crying. She leant her head back, tears down her face as the lady made sure everything was cleaned away and tidy. She adjusted Anastasia in bed and set her any girl in her arms.
[i “Let’s introduce you to your father, little boy.”] The woman said and opened the door. She smiled to Jobe, she wasn’t sure what had happened.
[i “Mr Hughes, perhaps you would like to meet your son.”] She smiled to him and murmured a congratulations as she set the little newborn boy in his arms.
[i “And your daughter is with your wife, all are doing fine. A little rest for her.”] The woman said before taking her leave.
Anastasia stares at the little newborn girl in her arms and gently touched her face, she was perfect. She kissed her forehead and honestly she was exhausted but how could sleep?
Justin stared at Willow,
“Our baby?” He breathed. Was she serious? He realised what had happened.
“Oh, Willow.” He said and hugged her tightly. He could have wept in that moment if he wasn’t so shocked as he rocked her gently.
“Shh....” he comforted quietly and just held her. He couldn’t believe it. They had lost a baby? It didn’t seem real. He stroked her hair gently and just breathed in her scent. She was alive at least.
Some time later, there was a babies cry. Then another? Or was that the same child? He just held her tighter.
“It’s alright.” He said quietly. He found it difficult to be happy for Jobe and Anastasia given what had happened right then.
“Rest, Willow. You gotta- you need to rest.” He whispered to her softly.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] As if she could hear his voice, her body started to respond now that she wasn’t in the toxic environment of smoke inhalation. She coughed aggressively as if trying to clear out her lungs and her body was forced into an upright position as her body purged itself of the toxicity that had made its way into her. It took her a few minutes before her coughing started to calm down so that she could take in her environment. She was no longer in the barn and Justin was with her.
Her eyes darted around the room in panic as she registered that they were in their own bedroom. Then the sharp pain in her stomach became prominent above all else and she looked down to see the blood stain on her dress. Her hand instantly went to severe the swelling of her belly had begun and she shook her head. [b “No.”] Her voice was barely ever as whisper. She repeated herself a couple of times before the tears finally found her. [b “Not our baby...please.”]
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe nodded, feeling useless twice over. He couldn’t help his wife, nor could he help Justin or Willow with whatever had happened. He called some of his staff to help him put of the remaining fire and gather the horses and when he was satisfied they were all doing their jobs he ran back inside and made his way back to their room where he could hear Anastasia’s painful cries. He wished that he could be there with her. He knew that she would be concerned and worried. She had wanted Willow there and she had no idea that Willow had been in an accident.
He ran his hand through his hair nervously as he tried to come to terms with what was happening. A miracle and a tragedy all at once.
Anastasia didn’t know what was going on, she heard the crash and smelled the smoke and she started to panic.
[i “Now, now dear. Focus on what’s happening now. Right, I think we are just about ready to start getting this lovely angel out now... with each pain you need to push.”] The woman said and Anastasia didn’t want to. She wanted to know what was going on!
What had happened?! Was Jobe alright? Where was Willow? She felt a very strong contraction and let out a surprised scream of pain.
Justin stares at Jobe.
“Wh-“ he looked to the snow. Had he not been quick enough? He looked her over.
“No- she’s not cut, she’s not-“ wait- this wasn’t what he thought it was, was it?
He scooped Willow up and held her close,
“I’ll get her to bed.” He murmured. He didn’t want to believe what every part of him was saying. He carried her to her room and he could hear Anastasia’s painful sounds as she tried to bring life into the world. He set Willow down,
“Willow- please wake up, what is going on!” He whispered and kissed her forehead, his hands were shaking horribly and he was so terrified.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow didn’t remain conscious for much longer as her body lay trapped under the beam of wood. She was totally oblivious to everything that was going on around her. She had no idea that Justin had forced his way into the flames or that he had freed her from the stables that had now collapsed in on itself as she lay against the snow.
Her lungs were full of smoke and her body had no longer been able to protect her child from the damage of the fire. The blood might have been unnoticeable against the dark black of her dress, but she would know that she had lost their baby if she survived this.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe was getting inpatient and he noticed that Willow and Justin had not yet returned. [b “What on earth is taking them so long?”] He asked himself aloud before taking it upon himself to go and look for them since he was secluded to the hallway and his wife was running out of time. Willow needed to be there with her.
When his eyes caught sight of the smoke his eyes widened, and he started to run and saw Justin cradling Willow on the ground. It did not take a genius to figure out what had happened. He stopped next to the two of them, looking them over as if checking they were both alright. It was clear very quickly that Willow wasn’t. [b “Dear God is that blood?”] He asked as he caught sight of the red liquid staining the snow beneath them. [b “Justin is she hurt?”] He asked as he dipped down next to them, wondering if he could do anything to help them.
Anastasia settled on the bed as the female doctor brushed in and sat with her.
“Where’s Willow?” She asked breathlessly and the female doctor shook her head, [i “No time to worry about that, my lovely. You’ve got a little one to meet after all! Now you need to listen to me, very carefully and just breathe right now.”] She cooed and hushed her a little as she began running over all the routine checks.
Anastasia was honestly terrified and she just wanted a friendly face by her. She followed every instruction to a tee and breathed deeply. She was in a lot of pain and her emotions were all over the place, what if she wasn’t ready? What if something went wrong?!
Justin stares at the stables.
“Willow!” He didn’t even think twice as he just ran into the flames, covering his mouth as he saw her under a beam.
“Willow- Willow! Stay awake, you hear me?!” He shouted above the flames. His eyes stung awfully and he coughed as he used all his strength to move the beam, he let the horses out so they wouldn’t be burned alive and he scooped Willow up, carrying her outside.
He lay her down in the snow and looked her over
“Willow? Willow! Come on, answer me!” He begged as he wiped her face free of Ash and soot. Was she going to die?! Not like this surely not.
“Come on, you’re stronger than this!” He said, his heart was hammering in his chest as he panicked and wiped soot from his own face, hiding a cough. The stables soon collapsed on itself with a crash and he shielded her from the wreck as he held her in the snow.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow was so focused on grooming her horse and beaming over the happy news that she was pregnant that she hadn’t noticed that one of the lamps had been knocked over by another horse at the other end of the stables. While she had been scared of the prospect of pregnancy, she was now completely and utterly besotted with the idea of having Justin’s child. So much had changed in the last year and her priorities had shifted and now she couldn’t wait to add ‘mother’ to her growing list of titles.
Her horse seemed to notice the spreading fire before she did, and she reacted in a way that showed that she was frightened, kicking and trying her hardest to get out. [b “What is it girl?”] She asked with a concerned voice as she backed up slightly, not wanting to get hurt by a scared beast. However, when she had moved out the way, the horse had managed to kick down one of the beams that was holding up the stables and parts of the building was starting fall around her. She had no time to react of get out of there before pieces of wood were starting to keep her trapped in the stables that was now fully on fire.
She couldn’t cry for help, no one would hear her and as a piece of wood kept her pinned to the floor, the smoke began to fill her lungs and she was finding it harder and harder to breathe.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe smiled down at her as she spoke of their child. He remembered what it was like to feel the movement of the legs or the arms. It was a truly magical experience and he couldn’t wait to finally meet their baby. It could happen any day now and he was just glad to be home with his wife they waited for the arrival of their child. Jobe moved quickly when she saw her try to move, with every intention of helping her out of the seat. However, he stopped dead when he saw that she seemed to be in pain.
[b “Is everything alright?”] He asked, a new concern upon his face as she seemed to have a second wave of pain. Her heart rate started to increase as he began to realise what was happening. He called for one of their servants to help. [b “I’ll get the doctor right away.”] He said as he looked over to Justin in hope that he would take care of Willow.
He was nervous and excited too and, in that moment, he felt useless. All he could do was get the doctor and she didn’t take long to get here.
Anastasia watched Jobe come in and she smiled a little. She felt Jobe’s hand and his kiss and she looked to him.
“Fine.” She assured him softly,
“Quiet, not as much movement today.” She said to Jobe. She did miss him awfully when he was away for the long days at the factory but she knew it had to happen. He was making a successful life for them as a family.
Anastasia went get up and it was like she pulled a muscle and she exhaled sharply and took a moment. She waited for the pain to subside but it didn’t.
“Jobe-“ She murmured, looking both happy and terrified at the same time.
“You need to get the doctor and Willow.” She said as she struggled to stand up. She winced and cringed as another ave of pain latched onto her and she clenched her teeth as she took a few moments.
A lady servant came to her immediately and helped her upstairs to the room, ushering soft comforts as she got her settled in bed as she went for the female doctor who would help her give birth, a midwife of sorts.
Justine watched Anastasia and eyes the turn of events.
“I’ll get Willow.” He assured her as he helped her up and then left her in the capable hands of the older maid. He looked to Jobe,
“I’ll be right back! Alright? Just... don’t panic!” He said as he darted off to find Willow, calling her name as he went out into the snow.
He nearly slipped and he jogged around to the stables.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] How quickly a year seemed to pass. Willow still couldn’t quite believe that they had been here in this time for a year. Justin had spent time tampering with the device that got them here in the first place, but she told him that he should give up. She was settled here, and she was happy to spend the rest of her life here with him, even if it meant that they had left behind their jobs and everything else. Every single day Willow had grown to love Justin more and she could not imagine her life without him now.
The two of them still lived with Jobe and Anastasia and the four of them had become closer over the course of the year. However, Justin and Willow had started to establish themselves in this era more, knowing that they were settling completely. The school room has been built before Christmas last year and as soon as the new year came around she had taken to teaching quickly. Many of the workers were now able to read and write and she was starting to teach them other things. Anastasia had helped for some time but now that she was almost ready to give birth it was only right that she was home resting. Willow was sure that she was giving birth to twins with how big she had got but she wasn’t going to say anything in case it scared her or got her hopes up. With no ultrasound, there was no way to tell.
Willow had her own happy news to share now. She had wanted to make sure first, but it was now her third month of missing her cycle and the last couple of mornings she had spent being sick was more than enough indication to her that she was at least four months pregnant now. The soft swell of her belly was only just beginning to show but it was not too noticeable yet. She smiled as she placed one hand over her stomach as she brought up the brush to her horse. Willow needed to spend some time in the stables so that she could figure out how she was going to tell Justin that he was going to be a father. While she had not wanted to say anything, she had been rather disappointed that it had taken this long for her to get pregnant. Now she was practically glowing, ready to share the news.
Her horse moved her nose towards Willow’s hand on her stomach and started to sniff around. [b “It’s probably going to be a few months until I can ride you again girl. It’s not completely safe while I am carrying a child.”] She said with a smile as she stroked her horse gently. [b “But I will not neglect you. Don’t worry.”]
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe still remembered the day that Anastasia told him that she was pregnant with his child. The moment was equal to that of their wedding day and he had been elated ever since. He had been so careful to ensure that everything in the pregnancy could go as well as possible and followed a lot of Justin’s advice. Apparently, they knew a lot more about pregnancy in the future and he had recommended some foods for her to avoid as well as some that were good for her and the baby. He just hoped that he had not been overbearing.
That morning, Jobe was at the factory preparing for the time that he would be away. He wanted to make sure that everything would run smoothly while he spent the first couple of weeks at home with his wife, helping her to adjust to life as a mother as well as getting used to be a father himself. All he needed to do now was to make sure all the relevant paperwork was signed off and that people knew they were to answer to Justin in the meantime. He trusted him more than anyone and it made sense for him to take control of the factory for him while he was at home with his wife and new child. The thought of such made him smile as signed the last piece of paper required. He was not going to waste another minute here when he could be at home, waiting for Anastasia to bring life into the world.
It did not take him long to get home and when he did he found Anastasia staring out at the snow that had begun to settle on the ground. He wrapped his arms around her, placing his hand on top of hers and kissed her cheek. [b “And how are my two favourite people doing?”] He asked with a smile. Anastasia really suited pregnancy and the glow made her even more beautiful. He could barely pull his gaze from hers.
It had been a long few months. Almost a year in fact. Things had been a lot to adjust to but it seemed like finally they were settled and more at ease in this era. It was coming up for their second Christmas with Jobe and Anastasia. There was snow settled on the outside and the air was cold and dry. It had been a wonderful year and honestly, Justin was excited.
Anastasia had fallen pregnant very quickly and was due to give birth any day now, whereas Willow has taken a little longer to fall pregnant, most likely because her system still had contraception in it, that’s probably why she hadn’t fallen pregnant. He was honestly relieved though and he was excited for the prospect of a child. Their child. He had been working as a well respect private doctor for Jobe, and of course had helped out some of Jobe’s closer business partners with his services. It felt like they had independence as well as being with Jobe and Anastasia and he had to admit, he had adjusted well.
He was in no rush for children
It was early evening and Justin was looking through his books, medical books of the time so he could brush up on this and that. There wasn’t pills and medicines like he was used to but he had done very well at making do and helping with some simple techniques. Good hygiene tended to be the answer to a lot of sicknesses but of course they had to be careful. He had helped Anastasia throughout her pregnancy and he knew Anastasia was due any day. He couldn’t wait, he was excited to meet Jobe and Anastasia’s one.
Finally Justin left his study took and stretched, looking around the house and wondering what time it was. His eyes gazed around as he grabbed a hot drink and looked outside from the conservatory, looking at the crisp clean layer of thin snow and he smiled a little to himself. They had done so well and he adored Willow, just the same as the day they married. She had never changed in his eyes, she was still as beautiful as ever. He took a drink and set his cup aside.
Anastasia has been overjoyed upon finding out she was carrying Jobe’s child. Justin has helped with all necessary arrangements but she was very particular about having a female doctor present for the birth and Willow when she was ready to give life to Jobe’s child. She had no idea she was carrying twins.
Anastasia has been helping Willow with her teaching, mostly just assisting but as her pregnancy had furthered she had stopped helping the past few weeks in Doctors orders of course. As much as she felt useless but she knew it was for the best and for the safety of her and her growing infants. Justin has prescribed her bed rest over the last few weeks but Anastasia couldn’t waste away in bed.
Anastasia came downstairs and sighed out as she saw Justin. She took a seat in the conservatory and honestly she was ready for her child to be born because it was exhausting carrying around a child. And of course she was excited. This was her and Jobe’s creation, a life perfectly balanced between them and she just prayed there were no complications for them. She settled and rested a hand on her bump, relaxing a little and sighing out. She smiled to Justin a little, she enjoyed the quiet as she watched the snow on the ground. How beautiful winter could be and she was honestly glad her child would be born in such a beautiful setting.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] The way that Justin returned her kiss was intoxicating and all evidence of her fatigue seemed to melt into something else entirely. Now all she felt was the desire and the need to have him overcome her. She laughed as he pulled back from her for a moment. [b “I was tired but now I want something else.”] She said, almost seductively as he pulled her in for another kiss. Both of them were breathless and it was clear that there was a tension building between them; one that needed a release.
Willow giggled as the two on them made their way into the room and towards the bed. Justin was able to make sure that he lay her down properly after carefully removing her dress. Even the process of doing that seemed to set her body on fire and she wanted nothing more than to have her fill of him right then but even so, he stopped to make sure that this was alright. She smiled and nodded, coaxing him fulfil something that both of them needed. He looked at her with a new intensity now and for a moment she found herself feeling vulnerable. While she was not inexperienced in the bedroom it have been quite some time since she had gone to bed with a man or even had anyone look at her the way he was looking at her.
It wasn’t her first time but it was the first time going to bed with a man she actually loved. The whole experience was something she would never forget. He was attentive and explored her body as much as she explored his until the two were finally connected as one, sharing in pleasure and love.
Being this close to a man so soon after making love was also new to her but she enjoyed the sensation of having the heat of him next to her as they both tried to catch their breath. Willow smiled up towards him and pressed a kiss against his cheek. [b “And I love you. Impossibly more than I did yesterday.”] She said with a laugh as she allowed her arm to fall over him as her head came to rest on his chest.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Anastasia was right. It had been an exciting few days for them but that also meant that it was extremely tiring and they would all benefit from a good night sleep. He closed his eyes as she moved behind him and simply breathed in the scent of her as she kissed his cheek. He smiled before sliding out of his seat and followed her upstairs. The two got themselves ready for bed and when he saw his wife’s form laying in the bed he found himself rushing his clothes off just so he could be near her. There was nothing sexual about his desire to have her close. He just wanted the closeness.
Jobe slid into the bed next to her and pulled her close, running his hand up and down her arm as they settled in for the night. [b “I do not think I could ever get bored of this.”] He whispered softly as he kissed her head and let out a satisfied sigh. [b “I love you.”]
Justin smiled a little at her and he was about to make a quick remark when she tugged his tie and pressed her lips to his passionately and he brought his hand up to her cheek, cupping it softly as he returned her passion. He pulled back momentarily and smiled a little,
“I’m starting to think you’re not as tired as you’re making out.” He laughed breathlessly and pressed his lips to hers again, wrapping his arms around her and bringing her closer again.
With careful steps and movements, he moved her to the bed, fingers dancing to remove the wedding dress she wore and consummate their vows from earlier. For the briefest of moments he paused to look at her, as if questioning if she was truly alright with this and when he found no objection, he laid over her. For a small moment he drank in the image of her, every inch of her skin and body, her face and the glint in her eyes. He leant down, pressing kissed to every inch of her that he could find. They had waited such a long time for this and he knew it wasn’t something to be rushed through but something for them both to be savoured as he took Willow as his, holding her close and letting himself explore every inch of her body.
Justin lay beside her and drank in her image, loving every inch of her flushed skin as he wrapped an arm around her and brought her close to her side.
“I love you.” He said softly as he kissed her forehead.
Anastasia thought for a while.
“Perhaps we should retire too. We could all do with catching up on sleep.” She said to him and smiled. She sighed softly as she pushed herself up. Anastasia was gently in her movements as she moved behind him and wrapped her arms around his shoulders, kissing his cheek softly before heading upstairs.
Anastasia stepped into their room and the lamp was already lit and the curtains already pulled as she got into bed and yawned, stretching her slender form, her hair not longer pinned up, instead loose down her back. She rubbed her eyes and felt the blankets immediately warm her up, the house was warm but there was something comforting about being under the weight of the blankets with her loving husband.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] The last thing Willow wanted was to appear rude but it seemed that most around the table were relatively understanding about the situation, knowing that she had a very busy week. While she was fatigued she still managed a smile as Justin pressed his lips against her head. She nodded and rose from her seat, echoing Justin’s gratitude as she told hold of his hand and allowed him to escort her out of the room.
Willow laughed and shook her head. [b “I’m not [i that] tired. I’m pretty sure I can make it up the stairs without falling asleep.”] It was strange knowing that she was about to retire to her own room but she was happy knowing that they know shared and room as man and wife. She looked around, noticing that her things had been placed around the room. This was their home and their base now and she couldn’t have been happier.
She turned to face Justin and smiled. [b “Yes husband. Bedtime.”] She said with a raised eyebrow and she grabbed hold of his tie and used it to pull him closer to her so that she could kiss him with a deep-rooted passion.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] [b “Well that is good because I am always amazed by you.”] He said, stealing a kiss from her lips as she asked what he had in mind.
[b “Anything you want my love. We can go to bed, take a walk around the gardens, read by the fire...the possibilities are endless my love.”] He said with a smile. He would be happy doing anything with her as long as she was happy and whatever she wanted to do, he would follow her lead.
[b “I love you Anastasia. Anything that makes you happy my love.”]
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