Monday, January 14 – Charlotte, North Carolina – 27 weeks pregnant
Sarina lays there, taking a deep breath as she watches him sleep peacefully, not wanting to disturb a single moment. She knew there was no way that she was going to take moments like these for granted after the worry that she was feeling exactly a week ago. She couldn’t thank her lucky stars enough that he was okay, and knew she’d probably never stop thanking Morgan and Christopher for what they did.
“Normally I am the one staring at you,” she hears, which breaks her concentration immediately. She could only smile back in response, remembering those times she woke up to the same thing.
“I think I’m beginning to understand why you laid there like that some mornings,” she offers, earning back a smirk in response.
“Ah, it’s so nice of you to admire my beauty…” She then chuckles, rolling her eyes as she half-expected a smart ass comment like that in response.
“Actually, I’m just glad that we get to spend this time together, like this.” He then reaches out, clutching her hand with his.
“When we married each other, I promised you that I’d be here for you. I vowed to hold you, cuddle you, listen to you, take care of you, and keep you safe. I vowed to make sure that you didn’t endure the same pain that we have endured ever again, and I vowed to be yours forever and always – till death do us part. I don’t break my promises, sweetheart.” She knew that, knowing she could trust him no matter what with how much their trust in each other had grown from the first day they met.
“I know, and I’m glad that I get to call you my husband.” A cheesy smile then forms across her face immediately. “Husband. That’s as much fun to say as it is to say Sarina Elliott.”
“Just like Abigail Elliott, it seems that Sarina Elliott has a nice ring to it as well.” He then brings her hand to his lips. “I meant what I said, so you don’t have to worry about me going anywhere. I wasn’t going to marry you and just leave you like that.” He then gives her a light kiss, before letting it go slowly.
“I would’ve probably smacked you if you did that to me.” He then chuckles.
“I wouldn’t expect otherwise.” He then goes to move slightly, letting out a small groan as he feels a sharp pain in his shoulder.
“Easy Chase…” She then reaches over, rubbing it lightly. “Relax, and take it easy. It’s only been a week. Don’t push it and not heal accordingly.”
“I just wish the nagging pain would go away.” He then sits up, grabbing the bottle of water and pain killers off of the nightstand. He then takes a couple, followed by a sip of the water.
“On a brighter note, I heard that chicks dig scars. You’ll have something to impress the ladies.” He then looks over at her, shaking his head.
“I don’t need to be impressing any ladies as I have the woman that I’ve wanted right here beside me.” She smiles back in response, as it didn’t hurt to hear that repeated multiple times a day.
“Well, how about this?” She then slips down the edge of her pajama shirt, revealing the scar that remained on her shoulder. “Even if yours is going to be a little bigger, we’re going to match now.”
Chase slowly nods his head, taking a deep breath as he tries to keep calm with the thoughts coming back to him immediately. There was no way he could forget what happened that day.
“I hope you enjoy the present I left for him, as well as what you’re going to receive,” he hears Alison say, as she brings her body against his, pinning him against the closest wall as he stood there blindfolded. “Let’s give her a show…” She then brings her lips to meet his once again, pushing against him, reaching into his boxers to stroke him slowly. “You’re so hard, baby.”
“Alison Reynolds!” A voice reigns through the place, which immediately causes Alison to back off of being against him. He could hear the wheels of the chair that Sarina was tied to rolling, followed by a gunshot being let off.
“Oh fuck!” Sarina let out immediately.
“What is going on?” His voice reign out, staying frozen in the same spot, still blindfolded. He feels arms wrap around him – recognizing them immediately to belong to Alan. He could feel them beginning to untie the mask. “What happened?!?”
“Chase….” He hears, snapping him out of his thoughts. He was now sitting up in the bed, breathing heavily, feeling a sudden panic on the flashback. “Chase?” He feels Sarina’s arms wrap around him immediately. “Talk to me, please. Say somet-”
“I’m okay,” he cuts her off, taking a couple deep breaths as he tries to get everything back under control and block out those feelings. “I’m okay.” He then finally turns to look into her eyes. “I’m fine.”
“I’m sorry….” She knew immediately what had happened and where she had transported him back to immediately in seeing him freeze up sitting there. Once again, she hadn’t been careful enough in knowing how sensitive his feelings still were about everything that happened. “I’m sorry, Chase. I shouldn’t had mentioned a single thing abou-”
“It’s fine, it’s not your fault.” He then takes a couple more deep breathes, before snatching the water off of the night table to have a couple of sips. “You couldn’t had known that it was going to cause me to do that.”
“I still should’ve been more careful in knowing that you’re still coming to grips with everything that happened. We’ve talked about this before.” He nods his head, remembering the night they were laying together and she made a comment exactly like something Alison said. It caused him to freeze up then, and flashback to that trail of events with her.
“I’m not mad at you, Sarina. It’s okay.” He then looks over at her, now calm, taking her hand once again with his. “I promise that I’m not mad or upset. If I’m going to move forward, I need to face everything that comes with it – and that includes dealing with flashbacks like that. You didn’t mean anything wrong as you are right with your comment.” He then looks back down at the bed spread, taking a deep breath. “That week with Alison was the worst of everything that she managed to do during the time that she was loose – well, and poisoning me so I was knocked out and she could have her way. But that week, every single emotion that you can think of has resulted from what happened. I’ve ranged from sadness, to betrayal, to disgust, to anger, to guilt, to being so sick to my stomach that I puked every single thing up.”
“Chase, it’s not your fault. You don’t need to live with that forev-”
“I know it’s my fault, but I do have to live with what happened forever. It’s not just going to go away. It happened, it affected me, and I have to deal with it accordingly like I have been. It’s coming, slowly, but there will be moments like that – and it’s not your fault, okay?” She slowly nods her head. “Out of everything that she did that week, that single moment where I was blinded, heard the gun shot, followed by your scream, is the scariest thing. I honestly thought the worst had happened. I thought she had popped off some shot at you, or threw you right in direct line of fire to save her own ass. I was fearing that when Alan got it off of me, that you were going to be gon-”
“That didn’t happen, though. I was okay. It just briefly brushed my shoulder.” He takes a deep breath, knowing that as the mark on her shoulder indicated that simple reminder.
“I know. But in that moment, I didn’t know that. The flashback took me back to that fear. It reminded me of how afraid I was. It reminded me of how guilty I felt at that time because I had let Alison continue this tirade, and led everything to that happening with the plan. I know factually that I am not guilty of what happened, but in that moment, that was the emotion. The scar took me back to that moment, hence why I froze up.”
“I told you, Sarina, it’s not your fault. Part of me moving forward is facing every bit of what happened. It’s about figuring out what I’m dealing with, why I am dealing with it, and how I can overcome it. I need to do that for me.” He then takes a deep breath, sipping on the water once again. “Actually, in a way, this has helped me because here I am openly talking about the emotions to you for a change. That’s progress. That’s a step in the direction. Those are things that I need to do to move forward.”
“Well, whenever you want to openly talk about your emotions, or anything, please know that you can turn to me whenever you want.” She then lightly kisses his lips, as he takes a deep breath. That simple reminder emphasized guilt in what he was doing right now in keeping the Carter secret from her. However, he remembered the reasons that he told Christopher and knew his actions were justified – right?
“That goes both ways. I’m always here for you, and for this princess as well.” He then kiss her lips in return, before kissing her stomach afterwards. “Do you realize that she was kicking around 3am?”
“While I was sleeping? Seriously?” Chase nods his head, remembering.
“I woke up in the middle of the night due to a bit of pain. I shifted myself over a bit, before getting set to close my eyes. I brought my hand over to your stomach, and she was kicking up a small storm. I rubbed your stomach lightly, and she finally calmed down.” Sarina could only let out a sigh as she looks over at him to meet his eyes.
“She woke up to make sure that her daddy was okay. Look at this – you’re both already looking out for each other. What am I going to do when she comes?” He already knew where those thoughts in her head were going.
“Don’t worry – I got enough love to spread around to both of you as you’re the ladies of my life, and I promise to take care of you both.” He then kisses her lips once again, content on keeping that promise in hearing that Carter had been caught soon.
“Aren’t we going home?” Sarina asks, as she looks out the Tahoe windows confused.
They had just got done lunch, and they were supposed to be heading home from what she knew. However, Chase was taking a different route then she remembered.
“I figured we stopped in and check on how Lindsay and Evelyn are doing,” Chase answers with a smile. He knew it was a better than telling her the truth.
“Actually, I think that’s a good idea. We could use some baby love right about now.” Chase lets out a small sigh of relief, glad that she bought what he was saying.
“I figured you and Lindsay can spend time with Evelyn, while I check out Ryan’s new puppy.” That was actually the plan as he knew the ladies would be busy once he got there, just not in the way that Sarina was probably thinking.
They pull up to the Blaney household, with both of them getting out of the Tahoe together. They walk up to the front door, with Chase opening it without even knocking.
“I told Ryan ahead of time that we were coming,” Chase informs her as she glances at him confused. “Go on inside. I don’t want you catching a cold.”
Sarina then enters the house as instructed, going around the corner as her jaws drops.
“Surprise!!” The bunch of ladies in the room let out as she enters, seeing the teddy bear cake in the center of the room. She then glances up, seeing the banner ‘Baby Elliott,’ along with the several other directions.
“Oh my gosh!” She lets out, clearly surprised by the surprise of the baby shower. On top of the decorations, she was surprised by everybody who had shown up to celebrate with her.
“The only ones that couldn’t be here were Kaitlyn (Sweet) and Morgan as they’re in Oklahome for the Chili Bowl, as well as Emma whose at home with the baby,” Lindsay says after a bunch of the girls get done giving her hugs. “However, we knew that we wanted to do something for you and the baby. We also knew that it’d be a good pick me up after everything that has happened.”
“This is amazing….”
Throughout the rest of the afternoon, the ladies played a variety of different baby games. Who could put the diaper on the doll the quickest? Who could guess the correct size of her stomach right now? Guess the baby food, where you try a baby food from unmarked jar and guess the contents. They also played bobbing for nipples, which was a fun take on bobbing for apples.
They then sat around the living room together, handing over the gifts that they’d bought for Sarina and the baby. She was thankful for the car seat from Cindy, as well as the diaper bag from Erin that matched the nursery. She knew Abigail would be stylish in the outfits that Samantha had bought, each gender neutral as nobody in the room (except Cindy) knew the baby’s gender yet. On top of that, she couldn’t complain about the diapers, bottles, and gift cards that had been purchased by the other ladies in the room.
“So since Kyle already went through the liberty of buying a go-kart for the baby, we knew that a firesuit was necessary as well,” Samantha says after they had done the rest of the gifts.
“She got a hold of me, and wanted to know the exact design of the firesuit that you are getting for JR Motorsports,” Kelley continues. “I offered the different designs to her, so she could order them accordingly. I then called her a couple weeks later, saying that your baby couldn’t just show you love so we needed to add some more.”
Samantha then hands over the big box, which Sarina easily rips open. She then chuckles as she begins to go through the contents, seeing that they had gotten her baby firesuits that would match each of the suits her and Chase would wear this season.
“Your baby will be the most stylish baby this season,” Kelley says as Sarina checks them out. “We got them in newborn, three month, six month, and 12 month, so each size this upcoming season you’ll be prepared for.”
“This is amazing and completely adorable,” Sarina replies. She then places them back in the box, before offering each of the ladies a hug. “Thank you everybody so much for the gifts. They all mean a lot to me.” She then rubs her stomach, taking a deep breath. “Hopefully this little one co-operates and shows up in a timely, yet healthy fashion for mommy and daddy.”