The rain was unexpected, but Jimmy smiled at the sound of drops hitting the window behind his head. Tugging on the edge of the blanket he let out a contented sigh. "So much for gettin' up early." It had been a plan that Lou had thought up late the night before. She'd sat straight up in bed, her hair falling around her shoulders in a mess of soft waves. She'd blinked into the darkness and turned slowly to look down at him lying in bed, one eye held open by sheer self-preservation. "What is it?"

"The shed."

She'd said the word with such clarity and her tone had a distinctive 'finality' about it that he knew she was clearly done with her thought. Too bad for them both that he had no idea what it meant. "The shed?"

"We'll clean it out tomorrow."

"Clean it… but we-"

Sure, they'd just moved in a few months ago and there was little in the shed to speak of, but with the way she chatted on, explaining it to him in great detail, all he could do at the end was nod. "Sure, darlin'… we'll clean it out tomorrow."

Satisfied, she'd looked down at him and smiled. "Good."

Jimmy'd laid one arm below her pillow and held the blanket open with the other. Lowering herself to the bed she'd nearly closed her eyes when suddenly she rose up to hover over Jimmy's face.

He blinked up at her and worried about what to say. "Yes?" It seemed straightforward enough.

"Early." With a quick peck to his lips she snuggled into the mattress and the blanket and fell fast asleep.

"Early…" he'd worried over her resolve on that idea, the long hours he'd been working at the Marshal's office hadn't been easy, but he'd try… for her.

*** ***

Now, with the rain dancing off the window pane Jimmy leaned a couple of inches back to look down at her face. A few breaths later he was pretty confident that Lou had overslept on her own plan. A devilish grin lifted the corner of his mouth. Being the 'supportive husband' he was… he wouldn't bother her with such a trivial fact. No, he would let his lovely wife get the sleep she so apparently needed.

The room around them had taken on a slight chill and a hiss of moisture frosted around the frame of each pane of glass. Closing his eyes he listened through the rain for the sounds of movement. Nothing. It sounded like everyone was taking advantage of the rain and staying at home.

"Good," he whispered to himself, "I could use the break." Lou stirred and he pulled her up against his chest pressing his lips against her forehead to see if she was cold. She sighed, her breath tickling the exposed skin above the neck of his shirt, and tucked her arms up between them, her hands sliding up to flatten against his chest.

Jimmy's eyes drifted closed to the continuing lullaby of rain against glass and the soft sensation of Lou's toes brushing against his legs as she slept.

Silence. A breath.

Jimmy's eyes opened in the soft light of the pre-dawn pink that cast a rosy tint to the room.

Again. A gentle flutter.

His body froze like a statue, his senses on alert. Reflexes that had kept him alive from men after his life had introduced him to a wonder.

Moving his hand down the soft cotton of her gown, his palm slid over her hip and tucked between their bodies. He waited with his fingers flattened against the side of her belly, his palm settled against the slight rise of her middle that cradled their child.

The touch was so light he was afraid that it had been his own reflexes that had twitched his fingers in anticipation, but the second push was impossible to explain away as anything but the truth.

His throat clenching with sudden tears, Jimmy slid down along the mattress past gathered cotton and bone colored buttons until his face rested opposite her stomach. A shift of his hand and he felt the movement increase in pressure. Lou's body tensed and then relaxed as the child shifted again. "Hey…" Jimmy whispered to his child, "careful how hard you push… you should always be gentle with a woman."


The question was followed with a soft chuckle and Jimmy tilted his head to look up at Lou. Her face was softened by sleep, the barely perceptible curve of her lips, but it was her eyes barely open that made him smile.

"Of course." He smoothed his hand over the cloth of her nightgown, gently pulling the cotton taut over her belly. Her hand covered his, repositioning it to feel the gentle swipe of movement as the baby turned in its mother's womb. "It's amazing, isn't it… what it feels like."

He felt a tremble in Lou's hand and twisted to get a good look at her face, wondering if something was wrong. Instead he saw the tears she tried to blink away and the wealth of love in her eyes. "Yes… it is."

prompt - Breathtaking Moments - Hands

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