Chapter 14 - So It Begins

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-October 21, 2017, 2:30 am-

Natasha turned in bed, her body sore and swollen. Looking for comfort, she turned towards Steve and pressed her belly into his lower back which was warm. She pressed her arms against his upper back and tried to fall back to sleep. She was having more light contractions, which Doctor Darnell had already discussed with her. A second after she felt the baby move, she heard Steve laugh. "Little one's feisty tonight, eh?"

"You could say that," Natasha sighed.

Steve rolled over to face her and rested a hand on her stomach, rubbing it lightly. "I'm sorry you can't sleep, babe. You must be exhausted." Steve slowly sat up so he could get closer to the baby. He leaned in close and said, "Listen, little one, you have to let your mom get some rest. It's time to sleep." He smiled up at Natasha as he rested his cheek on her belly. "It's okay, I had a talk with our kid and he's going to let you sleep," he laughed.

"He?" she asked. "So you think the baby's a he?"

"Oh... I'm not sure," Steve said. "It just came out that way. What do you think the baby is?"

"Boy or girl, I'm not sure, but I do think this baby is physically very strong," she laughed a tired laugh.

Steve crawled up the bed and pressed a kiss to her face next to her eye. "Try to rest, honey." Trying to cheer her up, he said, "Buck's coming over later to check on you."

"Ohhh, I love him but do we really have to have guests while I'm three feet wide and uncomfortable?"

"I can cancel if you want," he offered. "I know he's just worried about you though."

"I know," she sighed. "I'm cranky, I'm sorry. Don't cancel, there's no reason he can't come over other than my crankiness. I hope I don't scare him away."

Steve rested his head down on the pillow and brushed the hair away from her face. "You're not as cranky as you think you are. Buck's family, he understands anyway."

-October 21, 2017, 5:00 am-

"Steve?" Natasha whispered, laying a hand on his shoulder. "Steve, wake up, honey."

Steve was on his side, facing away from her. His shoulder jerked a little and she could see his head move. "What's wrong, honey?"

"I think..."

Before Natasha could finish, Steve quickly rolled over and his eyes flew open wider. "Is it go time?"

"I think so, yeah," she pursed her lips together.

"Are you okay? What's wrong?" he asked, sitting up to get out of bed.

"My water broke," she laughed. "At first I thought I peed myself - I literally thought I was so pregnant that I peed my pants."

Steve had moved around the bed to stand in front of her. He laughed with her now. Seeing she was okay made him calmer. "You're sure it was your water breaking?" he asked gently.

"Pretty sure, yeah - because I didn't have to pee and then I got cleaned up and put new pants on and it happened again when I got up off the couch."

"Okay, I'll get the bag," he said, pressing his hands on her biceps and starting to walk away.

"Honey, wait... I'd like to take a shower first. Today could be a very long day," she said with a little smile.

"Oh, right, yeah... well then, I'll shave while you're in the shower," Steve's mind started racing with thoughts. Natasha started to walk towards the bathroom. "Tasha?" he called. She turned to look at him and he stepped closer to her, holding his arms out for a hug. "This might be it, baby," he said with excitement. "This might be our last morning at home without the baby here."

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