It was odd to waken and feel almost utterly at peace. In the months since their arrival in Paris, nightmares had plagued him often, flashbacks to the horrors he had endured in that damned prison. Between them and the worries facing them in Paris and with the looming rebellion, he often found calm an security little more than a distant memory. But here, cocooned in blankets and his wife, with the bright sunlight filtering through the gaps in the shutters, he felt safe. And while he felt safe, he knew he could keep them, the woman tucked into his side with the tiny swell of belly that was their child nestled safely between them, safe too.
Feeling the little bump pressed against him brought a further wave of contentment sweeping over him, for as much as bringing a child into this mess that they called their lives just now terrified him, he was overjoyed that he was getting the chance. A chance he never thought he would have, at that. But Geillis had been wrong, and here they were with even more reason to fight and survive.
Satisfaction played in the little smile that drew on his lips as his hand reached down to cup the rounded bulge of his wife’s belly. His hand was so large that it made a good job of covering most of the evidence of the child. If only it would always be that easy to keep him safe…
Trying to jostle Claire, who he still believed to be asleep judging by her breathing, as little as possible, he scooted down the bed until his head rested on the mattress at the same level as the top of the bump. He pressed his lips gently against the swell and without moving away, began to whisper to the child inside.
“Madainn mhath, a leannan, Ciamar a tha thu?”