9:02 AM; CLINSTONE SPECIALITY HOSPITAL, INTENSIVE CARE UNIT
“She’ll wake up within a few minutes, Mister Mason,” the doctor said softly. “I have to do rounds, but I’ll be back with you in a few, all right?” he asked. Jacob only nodded, holding one of Alice’s hands between both of his own as the doctor walked back out of the room. Jacob held her hand up to his mouth, bouncing his leg in impatient anticipation.
Two and a half minutes later, Alice’s eyes fluttered open. Almost immediately, she groaned and shut them again.
“Allie?” Jacob asked, his voice hoarse. “Baby?” Alice turned her head toward him, forcing her eyes open again. “Hi, baby,” he breathed through the crack in his voice.
Alice glanced around the room. “Hospital?” she asked, her voice rough. Jacob nodded. “The twins, right?”
He nodded. “Premature labor. Something… something ruptured, I think. I don’t fucking know. You’d have to ask Bo. I haven’t been focused enough to listen to every word that comes out of the doctor’s mouth,” he admitted.
Alice offered a small nod. “Where is he?”
“I… I don’t know. I probably said something to him that makes me a total asshole.”
“This is why I can’t leave you alone, Jacob.”
He smiled faintly, leaning forward to press a lingering kiss to her forehead. “I’ve been so scared, Al,” he whispered.
She squeezed his hand. “I’m a fighter, remember?” she asked. “You’re the one who always tells me that.”
He nodded quickly. “Yeah, yeah. I know.”
“Where…?” Alice cleared her throat. “Where are the kids?”
“With Bo. He… he’s been taking care of them and… I have still been a total ass to him,” Jacob whispered.
She shook her head slightly. “I really can’t leave you alone, can I?”
“Never again, preferably.”
“I promise,” she said softly. She closed her eyes as Jacob pressed a kiss to her hand. “Where are the twins? Are they…?”
“I think they’re in the NICU,” Jacob said.
“You think?” Alice questioned.
“I haven’t looked at them. I don’t… I was scared, Allie. I didn’t know if you were going to make it. I-if I had to choose to be in here with you or in here with the babies that could’ve killed you… Well, I chose you. I always will. I can’t be around them.”
“I don’t blame you,” she admitted. “The last thing I wanna do right now is see them.”
Jacob turned toward the door as it opened. Charlotte and Katie walked into the room, Bo behind them, Elijah on his hip. “Hi, baby,” Jacob whispered, carefully releasing Alice’s hand to pick up Charlotte.
“Hi, Mom,” Katie whispered.
Alice smiled softly. “Hi, sweetheart.”
“Can I hug you?” Katie asked. Alice nodded. Katie leaned down, carefully wrapping her arms around Alice’s shoulders. Silently, Bo crossed the room and set a bag and a cup of coffee on the table by Jacob. He set Elijah down, whispering something that Jacob couldn’t hear. The young boy nodded before Bo turned and headed for the door.
“Bo, wait,” Jacob said suddenly. Bo stopped in the doorway, his posture straightening out as he laid a hand on the doorframe. Jacob stood up, setting Charlotte down in his seat. “Behave, okay? Be gentle with Mommy.” Charlotte nodded. Jacob walked to the door, stepping out of the room to stand in front of Bo. “I’m so damn sorry,” he whispered.
“For what?” Bo asked quietly.
“Anything and everything. I know I was… insufferable. Probably a total dick. I don’t… I don’t remember much of what’s been happening this last week, but I know I was an ass. I’m sorry,” Jacob said.
Bo offered a weak smile. “You were in pain. It’s okay.”
“It’s not okay. You’ve been taking care of me and my kids for a week. Jesus Christ, Bo, you’re paying Alice’s bills. I…” Jacob trailed off, giving a helpless shrug. “I don’t know what to say. You’re amazing. Thank you for everything, and I am sorry for everything else,” he said. Bo only nodded. “What’ll it take for you to forgive me?”
“Like I said, you were in pain. It’s fine. I forgave you as soon as it happened,” Bo said.
“But… but why are you so sad?” Jacob asked.
“I just have a lot going on, Jake. It’s not because of you,” Bo said softly.
“What’s going on?” Jacob asked, his brow furrowed. “You can talk to me, Bo.”
“Jake, you have a family to deal with.”
“You are my family.”
“Later, okay? Your wife just woke up. You relish in that happiness for a while. I… have some paperwork to fill out for your—” Bo cut himself off. He didn’t want to bring up the twins again. “I have some paperwork that has to be filled out. But I’ll talk to you soon. I, uh, brought you donut and coffee. Make sure you eat,” he said. He hugged Jacob quickly and started to walk away from the sergeant.
Jacob reached back and grabbed Bo’s wrist. “Is it Jensen? Did he do something? Do I need to kick his ass?” he asked.
Bo chuckled softly. “Jensen is amazing, and our relationship is one hundred percent fine. It’s not because of him,” he said.
“No.” Bo turned back toward Jacob, offering a smile. “Jake, go be with your family. I’ll take the kids out for an early lunch in an hour or so. Enjoy being a family until then,” he said.
“You promise you’ll talk to me later?” Jacob asked.
“Promise,” Bo said softly.
“I’ll kick your ass if you break that promise,” Jacob warned.
Bo rolled his eyes, shaking his head. “I don’t make promises I don’t intend to keep,” he said. “I promise,” he repeated. Jacob nodded, releasing Bo’s wrist. “I’ll be back soon. I love you.”
One corner of Jacob’s mouth lifted. “I love you, too, Blondie.”
“You better,” Bo said. Jacob watched him walk down the hall before he walked back into Alice’s room. Because of Bo, his wife was alive and his children were all well-fed and well-rested. He didn’t know what he’d do without the short blonde always looking out for him and his family.
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