One shot 1. The Boy

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Disclaimer: I do not own Storm and Silence, its plot or its characters. It belongs to the incredible Sir Rob.

He stared at a palm-sized piece of paper in his hands. His heart clenched in yearning. On that piece of paper was a coloured sketch of a toddler. The toddler has the brown hair of his mother and his irises are the same shade of sea blue as his father. His young eyes somehow held a combination of calculation and mischief. The kind of sorts that schemes for the best ways to steal cookies from the cookie jar. Or to steal your heart.

He must be a clever child.

It's been three years now. Nearly three years since the babe was born, which was also when he had seen Lilly last. Three years and a couple of months since that very night in Egypt. That night. That night when the child was conceived. That passion-filled night. That night when all logic fled, when all barriers broke down, when all that mattered was the love in the air and the two of them. Off came the clothes, off came the rhyme and reason along with it. Damned be the consequences, leave the worrying for another time.

Perhaps it was the heat of Egypt affecting them or perhaps it was simply the intense emotions that had been kept tightly sealed for far too long. Whatever it was, he was secretly glad for it to have happened, although he'll never admit it to himself.

Shaking his head out of his reverie, he continued reading her letter.

A letter from her arrives every two months or so, not too often to be suspicious lest that their letters be intercepted by his rivals. The letter normally arrives together with a commissioned portrait of the child during the middle of a month of the two-month cycle, via private messenger. The public post office was not too trustable. Those mid-month days were the ones he looked forward to most, next to the day he can see them again.

Ever since they came back from Egypt, he found out she was pregnant after she had been running to the toilet to and fro throughout the day to vomit. The client in his office then was a doctor and noticed that the young (wo)man was ill. Thinking that she was a man, the doctor made a joke about 'him' being pregnant if 'he' were a woman, shrugging the symptoms off as only being 'under the weather'. The shock on both their faces upon hearing his words would have been hilarious if the situation weren't that dire.

He demanded that she retreat to England's remote countryside because it was only a matter of time before Lord Dalgliesh catches wind of the chip in his armour. Dalgliesh would definitely use that to his advantage. At least at the countryside, it was far away from the dangers of his world.

She and the child was a liability to him, surely, but a liability that he doesn't regret.

Being the fiery little Ifrit, his little ifrit, that she was, she was full of protests and refused to comply with him.

Then one day, she got nabbed by Dalgliesh's goons and beaten for information on him. At least her baby bump then wasn't obvious to Dalgliesh's men or anyone at all yet.

Her stubbornness prevented her from disclosing any information about him to them. He doesn't know whether to be glad for her loyalty to him or be furious for letting her endanger her and the baby's health.  Luckily he got to rescue her before it was too late. Luckily her pregnant belly was untouched, only her face, but that didn't make the situation much better.

After that incident, he was too overwhelmed by what happened and he left no room for arguments. He made preparations and she quickly left for the countryside where he made sure that the little cottage she would stay at was protected by his men 24/7. The whole village was secured by his men, even the town that the village was in. He was very meticulous about it all. Never again will he allow his nemesis to get a hold of something so dear to him.

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