Dr. Vanti quickly added in a softer voice, “I understand your concerns, truly I do, but the pain is only going to get worse. Everyone in this room cares about you, and it hurts to watch you suffering needlessly. Please, let me prescribe some painkillers, and promise me you will take them. They won’t be opioids, and there is very little chance of developing an addiction to them. Instead of masking the pain with feel good chemicals, they block the pain receptors.”
Feeling utterly defeated, Sunny rested her face against Hawk’s shoulder. “Okay.”
“We can do some injections that could help with the pain management and nausea as well,” Dr. Muller added.
They talked a little bit longer with Hawk, but Sunny had once again checked out of the conversation. She knew she was in shock, but she just couldn’t find it in herself to care. Not caring about anything was her current goal. Closing her eyes, she shifted her head so it was over Hawk’s heart, and she lost herself in its steady beat.
It wasn’t until Hawk shifted her off his lap that she realized they were alone.
“Sorry,” he said softly as he studied her face. “I didn’t mean to wake you.”
“I wasn’t sleeping,” she said in a rough voice. “Where did the doctors go? Can we go home now?”
“Yeah, we can go home,” he reached out and cupped her cheek. “You’re coming home with me.”
She normally would have argued, but she so didn’t want to be alone right then. “Okay.”
“Okay,” he said in a soft voice as he gave her a gentle kiss.
Holding Sunny’s fragile hand tight in his own, Hawk opened the front door to his large Tudor style home on the outskirts of D.C. It was a big two-story sprawling house, one meant for a family, and when he’d bought it last year, he’d purchased it with Sunny in mind. The moment he’d walked through the empty home, he’d had a crystal clear vision of what it would be like to fill this house with beautiful, dark eyed children. How it would feel to walk through the front door to find Sunny waiting for him with a welcoming smile and their baby in her arms. The vision had been so overpowering, so real, that he’d almost stumbled.
Already, her touches were all over the house. She’d helped him decorate it, spending countless evenings going to various stores and art galleries. Sure, he could have had a professional come in and do whatever he wanted, but not even the best interior designer on earth could match her style. Some might turn their nose up at her eclectic, bohemian tastes, but he’d grown to love the random mixture of styles that was as unique as Sunny.
The two-story entryway was graced by a huge wrought iron chandelier from the eighteenth century, which went surprisingly well with the modern Native American artwork on the walls. A wide burgundy and gold oriental rug brought warmth to the room, and he placed his keys in the black ceramic bowl near the entry.
They hung up their jackets in silence then Sunny followed Hawk as he led her to the kitchen.
Decorated with bright, cheerful splashes of yellow and gray granite countertops, the kitchen was designed for comfort. Sunny’s print was on this room as well in the whimsical collection of teapots lining the wide window overlooking the back garden. Though it was nighttime, through the shabby chic lace curtains, he could see the massive backyard where he one day planned on building his kids an enormous playground.
Then his mind shifted to much darker places…to a future that was too horrible to even imagine.
A future without Sunny in it.
Taking a seat on one of the blue leather stools that lined the counter, Sunny placed her arms on the stone then rested her head on them, her dark eyes following his movements.
Shaken to the core, he placed his hands on the smooth granite counter by the sink, pretending to look outside.
What he was really doing was trying to fight back the tears that burned his throat.
No, he couldn’t give into the tears burning his nose and closing his throat. Sunny needed him to be strong now more than ever. He had to hold himself together, even if inside he fell apart.
Trying to distract both himself and her, he turned on some music, a classical guitar piece. Though they were very different on the surface, beneath the skin they shared so many similar tastes it was eerie. And they understood each other. Their relationship was born of a deep friendship, the kind where secrets were shared and cherished. Love between friends that had grown into so much more.
Sunny still had her head down on the counter, and he gave her the space she needed to process what had just happened. When she was ready, she would talk. In the meantime, he could make himself useful by cooking something light for her to eat. They’d picked up her new painkillers and she had to take them with food.