*an Emery&Chris story*
Thanks to sisterly advice, Emery discovers a secret while Chris is gone for reshoots!
Warnings: Language, fluff, discussion of miscarriage
Word Count 1660
Emery signals a left turn into the drive thru diner, asking her sister if she wants a snack. “I don’t know if it’s the heat, or what,” she says, making the turn, “but I’ve felt awful for two weeks and the only thing that sounds any good to me right now are root beer floats. I’ve probably gained five pounds while Chris has been away.”
Her sister Mackinzie looks up from her phone. “Did you say root beer floats?”
Emery nods, reaching into the side door pocket for some cash. “Yeah, why?”
Mackinzie waits while Emery places her order at the staticy old box, also ordering fried mozzarella sticks and a sweet iced tea. “Emery?” She asks with a restrained calm, “Are you pregnant?”
“What? No… I can’t-”
The redhead’s jaw snaps shut and she starts counting off on her fingers. Her eyes pop, her hands shaking. “Oh my God,” she whispers. A smile grows on her face, reaching her bright blue eyes. “I might be. We got stressed, keeping track of my cycles, so we stopped paying attention. I can’t remember my last period.”
Her sister nods, bouncing in her seat as Emery pulls the truck forward through the line. “You were sick and missed church a time or two and you said you’ve felt bloated from summer foods. You haven’t been exercising because you didn’t wanna put strain on your foot. I know you had at least one root beer float at the family reunion, and you’ve mentioned them a few times. You didn’t know that’s a common pregnancy craving?”
The women quiet as they pull forward to the window. Emery makes her payment, taking the food, too distracted to talk to one of her former students. Mackinzie says, “Sis, I’m pretty sure you’re pregnant.” She points across the street. “Pull over there. Go to the Piggly Wiggly and let’s get a pregnancy test.”
In a daze, Emery follows her sister’s command, crossing over carefully in the traffic, pulling a mozzarella stick from the bag. “Mackinzie, I can’t go in there, to buy that. It’s tourist season. If anyone saw me, it would be all over the internet before we’d even get home.”
“Yeah, that’s true. Didn’t think about that… What if I go in and get it for you? I’ll even pay for it if you let me stay with you while you wait for the results?” She taps her sister’s leg while she nibbles the cheese stick and pulls the truck into park. “I mean, I’m sure you’d rather Chris was here, but-”
“I can’t do it alone,” Emery says, squeezing her sister’s fingers tightly. “I mean, you can’t come in the bathroom, and I better drink all this tea fast, but no, I want you there-”
“-I’m your sis, I’m always there-”
“And no matter what, positive or not, you can’t tell anyone, not even Dan, and definitely not Mom or Chris.” Mackinzie is visibly shocked by the determination on Emery’s face. “I won’t hurt him like that again. I know everyone thought I took it hard, but you have no idea how the miscarriage killed him. He’s working and I don’t want to get his hopes up. If I’m not pregnant, he doesn’t even have to know. And if I am, I’ll wait till the right time to tell him.”
“Ok, Em. Whatever you need. You’re stronger than any superhero I know.” She reaches for her purse in the back seat. She chuckles, “Drink your tea. I’ll be back in a few minutes.”
Emery watches her sister climb down out of the truck. Finishing the fried cheese, she rests her head against the seat, inhaling deeply, gently placing her hand over her belly. She begins poking and pushing against her flesh, searching for any signs of change. Calculating in her mind, she quickly reaches for her phone, estimating she’s about six weeks along. “Siri, how big is a six week old fetus?”
“Here’s what I find when I search the question ‘how big is a six week old fetus?’” Siri replies in her computerized voice.
Emery clicks on the first link provided, smiling to think the baby, if she’s pregnant, is the size of a sweet pea. She continues reading, whispering aloud, “‘Your baby’s nose, mouth, and ears are beginning to take shape at 6 weeks pregnant. You may be having morning sickness and spotting.’ Spotting. That’s why I hadn’t figured it out.” She closes her eyes and says a silent prayer the spotting she’s experienced isn’t sign of a miscarriage. She continues reading, mumbling, “Sore boobs, exhaustion, mood swings. Fuck. How did we not figure out I was pregnant?!” She chuckles. “This is like textbook, and I’ve been such a bitch lately.”
Lost in her thoughts, she didn’t see Mackinzie approach the car. “What did you say, Sis?” Her older sister asks, climbing up into the truck.
Emery swallows her sip of tea, before holding up the cup to look at it. “Shit. That’s a lot of sugar and caffeine. Can I even drink sweet tea now, if I’m pregnant?”
Mackinzie chuckles, resting the bag at her feet. “Depends on which doctor you see. If you can get in with Puckett, like I did, she’ll let you, in moderation. But you get a Yankee doctor, if you decide to buy that house in Boston, and they’ll tell you to cut back.” She fastens her seatbelt and turns to her sister. “What were you saying as I got in the truck?”
Emery rests her cup back in the console. “I was thinking out loud. It’s a wonder we hadn’t figured it out ourselves. I was a real bitch right before Chris left. It was like everything was happening at once. Grandad had his stroke, they sent me for another scan on my foot, the Leno viewing party, then the dash to Boston for the state primary. Plus all the tech troubles I was having with the new computer systems I’ve gotta be working with this year. I was just awful to Chris.” She shakes her head thinking about it now. She backs the car out of the parking space. “Really, I think our last words to one another was a fight about laundry, and he couldn’t find things he needed to take into the city, like his razor and beard kit. I’m pretty sure ‘I’m not your damn maid’ was screeched at the top of my lungs.” She hangs her head, sighing deeply.
Mackinzie sucks in her breath. “Why does Captain America need his razor? Is he not gonna be shaggy and bearded in the next one?”
Tapping her horn at the car in front of them, Emery quickly pulls to the left, deciding not to follow that driver out of the lot. Exiting from another side of the shopping center, Emery says, “You haven’t seen the leaked photos? Holy fuck, I need to bang my husband. Like now. Is that a side effect of pregnancy this early?”
Quickly scrolling her phone, Mackinzie holds up the image of one of the leaked photos. Chris, walking across a parking lot in a faded blue shirt, hand fisted at his side. “Hell no, not this early. That’s just a side effect of being married to this sexy bastard. Come on, Em, you’re married to Captain fuckin’ America. And he’s in Steve mode now? I don’t even care he’s my brother in law, I wanna lick my phone screen.”
Emery hits her older sister in the shoulder, maneuvering the big truck into another lane. “So when is the horny phase? God, he better be around for that. But he’s working non stop till-” At the red light, Emery slams on the brakes. “Fuck. Fuckin’ hell. Shit, shit, shit. I can’t be pregnant now. If I’m pregnant now, that means I’m due in the middle of the A4 press tour.” The panic is clearly written on her face.
Mackinzie reaches over to pat her sister’s arm. “Relax. Even if he goes on the tour, and you said he still hasn’t decided about that, Downey could have him on a plane and home in five hours.”
“He’s working round the clock for the next several months.” Emery breaths hard, beads of sweat forming on her forehead as she turns into the proper lane, heading out of town towards her house. Their house. “What if the baby arrives and he’s not there?”
“Get a grip, Sis. A first pregnancy won’t deliver in less than five hours. Do you remember how long I was in labor with Dawson? Hella long. That’s how long. Like we could have a whole Marvel marathon in the birthing room before your baby arrives… But let’s not panic till you pee on that strip, and see what it says, okay?”
An hour later, the sisters stare at the four pregnancy tests lined up on the edge of the bathtub. Emery sucks in her breath. “I still don’t believe it. I need to hear it from a doctor.”
“Fine. Make the call. I’ll be right there with you.”
Near closing time, the nurse taps on the door of the office. Emery drops the paperclip she’d been fidgeting with onto he desktop as Dr. Jamie Puckett enters the room. “Em, it’s official. You’re gonna be a momma. You get to tell Chris the good news. He’s gonna be a daddy.”
The doctor walks to her desk, patting her patient’s shoulder as she passes by, before resting against the ledge of the dark stained wood. “Your math was off, Emery.” She reopens the file. “You’re actually about eight weeks along. If you want, we can do an ultrasound? A few of the nurses that know you, and know what you’ve both been through, said they’d be happy to stay late to assist with the procedure… How about it, Momma. Wanna meet Baby Evans?”
With tears in her eyes, tightly gripping her sister’s hand, the beautifully pregnant red-head nods. “Yes.”
click here for the next Emery &Chris story, Killing Time
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