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The yell that tore out of my throat at the sight of Abby dropping to the ground right in front of me bordered on inhuman. My job was to protect her, to keep her safe, and I had failed beyond reason.

Simon had just come through my ear piece with information about a possible attack coming from somewhere within the Inauguration ceremonies when gunshots sounded next to us and Abby went bolting from my side. I didn't have time to grab her as she disappeared into the crowd, no doubt trying to help anyone she could.

"Simon, use whoever you need and get Grant in custody until we have answers. He's behind this." I spoke quickly, barking out my command gruffly into the mic in my sleeve before I took off after Abby. I could see other security and police racing after her, desperate to get her attention as her stubborn ass kept darting around and pushing forward. I don't know where she thought she was going or who she thought she would help in this mess, but I'd ask those questions later.

Just as she was within reach of me, more shots sounded around us and she went crumbling to the grass. I yelled at people to get down and get out of the way as I forced myself to get to her side, which I couldn't seem to do fast enough. Security surrounded us as I moved to shield her with my body, scooping her into my arms.

I lost sight of her as my eyes filled with tears. Her eyes were closed, her face serene as blood seeped from her head and somewhere in her back, staining her beautiful dress and coat, and turning the ground around us red. I made quick work of holding her close and putting pressure on the wounds.

"We need help here!" I screamed to no one in particular, and even still, no one responded. My throat was already raspy with desperation. Without thinking, I took a risk and scooped her into my arms and shielded her as best I could as I hurried to get her out of harm's way.

I had plans in place for every type of situation or potential attack, I had been studying and strategizing for months, and somehow every "what-if" scenario had gone to hell in a matter of seconds. I could hear my team communicating in my ear as they apprehended multiple suspects and started helping the wounded. I couldn't focus on that now. I knew they were capable of getting the situation under control and administering care where it was needed. My only priority was Abby. As I dropped to my knees where she had fallen, her eyes lost focus and she shivered in my grasp. She was losing a decent amount of blood and I worried for her and the baby. I couldn't let my emotions control me right now, instead, I ran on sheer adrenaline.

"Roman! Over here, let's go!" Simon barked just behind me. I turned to see him waiting at one of our SUVs, the door open for us to climb in. I made my way over with Abby limp in my arms and climbed in the back with her. Simon raced to the driver's seat and threw the car in drive, navigating us to the hospital as fast and as safely as possible.

I could hear Simon talking with the hospital as we made our way through shut down D.C. streets. He was also in touch with Abby's doctor, Avi, to be thorough and make sure the baby was safe. I made a mental note to thank him for his discretion and not sharing our news when it was clear he was onto us and the secret we had been keeping until later tonight.

My eyes welled up again at the thought. Abby and our child were my world, and in seconds, she was ripped from me. If it weren't for my heart pounding out of my chest and my head telling me to get her to emergency services, I'd still be crumpled and helpless on the ground with her as she slowly bled out on the ground.

"Talk to her, Roman. Let her know you're here. I'm sure she can hear you." Simon urged and kept my thoughts from getting any darker than they already were. I stroked her blood-matted hair from her face as best I could, and untucked my shirt to wipe at her skin. I could see the pulse fluttering delicately in her neck and I pressed my fingers to her pulse point to register the beats per minute.

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