Chapter 32 - They Took the Stars Out of Heaven

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June 1944

Jonathon came up out of a deep sleep. He laid with his eyes closed, listening to rain beating against his bedroom windows. The warm spring had turned cool and rainy over the last few days, in spite of the fact it was now summer.

The sudden downpour must have woken him, he decided, and he rolled over, intent on trying to get back to sleep. Then he heard a sound like a cry, and he opened his eyes. That was Helen, not Douglas, and it came from the bathroom.

"Helen?" he said, throwing off his covers.

"Johnny!"

From the sound of her voice, it was clear she was crying, and he rushed to the closed door. "What's going on? Can I come in?" he said, his hand hovering near the door knob.

"Yes."

When he opened the door, she was sitting on the edge of the tub, doubled over with her arms over her stomach.

"What's wrong!" he asked with alarm as he knelt in front of her.

"I don't know!" she said, tears in her eyes. "It hurts. My stomach hurts bad, and – I saw blood."

No, his mind cried. "Are you sure?"

"I saw it! I'm bleeding, Johnny!" she said plaintively, and then bent over as she started sobbing.

"Let's not panic," he said, feeling helpless in spite of his words. "I'll – I'll call Dr. Williams. He'll know what's going on." He stood, but Helen was still doubled over, crying. "Come on," he said, gently helping her up. "It can't be good for you to sit here. You should lie down."

After he had her back in bed, he leaned over to caress her tear stained cheek. "Try not to worry. Dr. Williams will know what to do."

"Hurry, Johnny."

He snatched up his robe on the way to the bedroom door, and put it on as he raced down the stairs. In the library, he rummaged through the drawer in the writing desk to find their address book, then ran to the phone with it. His hands were shaking so badly, he had a difficult time turning the pages to find the doctor's number.

After he dialed, he listened to it ringing and tried to calm his breathing. The doctor would know how to stop what was happening to Helen. He had to.

"Hello?"

"Dr. Williams, it's Jonathon Blackwell!" he said breathlessly. "There's something wrong with my wife!"

"Take a deep breath, Mr. Blackwell," the doctor said, chuckling a little. "Then tell me what her symptoms are."

Jonathon filled his lungs, and let it out slowly. "She's feeling pains in her stomach and – there's blood." Jonathon could hear the doctor breathing while seconds ticked by. "Doctor?"

"I'll leave now," he said, his tone more serious. "I should be there in a half hour."

"You don't – you don't think it's the baby, do you?" Jonathon stuttered, fear rising inside him.

"I won't know until I exam her. Try to keep calm, it won't help your wife any if she sees you losing control."

"Yes, sir."

"I'll see you soon."

Jonathon hung up the phone, and headed to the stairs. Halfway up, he hesitated. He'd forgotten the gate was locked. He should go wake James to open it, but he didn't want to leave Helen alone that long.

Annie, he thought, turning around. She'd have time to get dressed and get to James before the doctor arrived.

When he made it back to his bedroom, Helen had her face pressed into her pillow, the sound of her muffled sobs filling the room. "Don't cry, Helen," he said gently, sitting on the bed next to her. "The doctor will be here soon."

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