Title: Shouting Lies Across Seas of Misunderstanding
Author: Rose
Pairing Jared/Jensen
Rating NC-17
Words 28,900-ish
Warnings/Enticements Mpreg, knotting, A/B/O dynamics, scene of nonexplicit noncon
Summary: At the tender age of twelve Jensen unexpectedly went into heat and was the victim of a brutal attack, the result of which was pregnancy and subsequent miscarriage. Twenty years later Jensen is happily married to his Alpha, Jared Padalecki. For the past several months they have been trying for a child only to be dealt with false hopes and ultimately the devastating news that Jensen is unlikely to conceive. A moment of passion changes everything but will a few misspoken words rip away everything Jensen has ever wanted?
Author’s Notes: Written for the 2014 [livejournal.com profile] spnmpregbb. For more extensive Author's Notes, see the Fic MasterPost

The fast woosh-woosh of the baby’s heartbeat filled the exam room. Jensen couldn’t hold back his emotion. It seemed like the last couple of weeks every little thing set him off, but this wasn’t little. This was huge. His baby was strong and alive inside him, thriving. Dr. McCoy handed him a tissue.

“Is…is it too early to know if it’s a boy or girl?” Jensen asked, wiping his eyes.

“Yes, you’re only 8 weeks and a few days. We can see the gender on the sonogram between sixteen and eighteen weeks. So you have a bit of a wait.” Dr. McCoy printed off a picture of the baby and powered down the machine. “I expected to see your husband with you on this visit. How did he take the news?”

Jensen swallowed, avoided her eyes as he wiped the gel from his belly. While he wouldn’t exactly say he was showing, he had noticed that his abs were not as firm as they used to be. “I haven’t told him yet. Waiting for the right time.”

Jensen had never made a secret about how badly he wanted children. Was it possible Jared had only said he wanted them too to appease Jensen? That was exactly the kind of guy Jared was, always putting Jensen and his wants and needs before his own—even something as life-changing as having a child. He must have felt like he dodged a bullet when Dr. McCoy had told them Jensen was unlikely to conceive. Jared wasn’t the type of guy to walk away from his responsibilities. He would be a father to the baby out of a sense of duty and obligation but not love. How could he bring a child into that environment? Jared might grow to resent the baby, resent Jensen. Maybe grow to hate them both. Jared was an Alpha; he could go on fathering children for many years—maybe the rest of his life—but Jensen was nearing his mid-thirties, still within child-bearing age, but the risks of defects and complications increased with each passing year. This felt like his last chance to have the child he so wanted but Jared…. It felt like an impossible decision: Jared or the unborn baby.

“How are you feeling overall?”

Jensen shrugged, mind more on Jared than on himself. “Still nauseous. Bloated. I get headaches, too.”

Dr. McCoy nodded. “All lovely symptoms caused by the increased omesterone, and all normal.” She smiled and patted his shoulder. “Typically the fatigue and nausea subside in the second trimester.”

Jensen scoffed. “Yeah, but I have other things to look forward, too.”

“True enough.” She made some notes in Jensen’s file. “I want to see you back in another month. Call if you have concerns, but everything looks excellent, Jensen.”

After his appointment Jensen went back to Padalecki Advertising. He had cleared his morning so he could make his appointment with Dr. McCoy. He had just taken a seat behind his desk and woke up his computer when Jared came in.

“Hey, Jen, where were you? I was looking for you.”

Jensen swallowed. I was at the Andrologist. I’m pregnant. He willed the truth to come but couldn’t get the words to come, crushed by fear and uncertainty. His stomach roiled, his morning sickness and nerves were a horrible combination. The little bit of toast he had managed to eat at breakfast was threatening to come back up. “I had brunch with a prospective client, a local law firm looking for more exposure.” He was surprised at how easy the lie had come. Part of him wanted Jared to see through it, but he just gave a distracted nod.

“Well, Lindberg needs the quarterly expense reports. So can you get them to him ASAP?”

“Sure. Not a problem.”

Jared turned and left and Jensen promptly vomited into the waste can. He had to tell Jared but wasn’t sure he could, knowing how Jared felt about having children. Maybe Jensen could feel him out a little. See if it was possible he might change his mind.

That night for dinner Jared wanted Thai. It was the last thing Jensen wanted and it was all he could do not to bolt from the dining room as Jared shoveled the foul looking and horrible smelling food into his mouth. Jensen nursed his Sprite, now as when he was pregnant all those years ago, the lemon-lime soda was the only thing that helped settle his stomach.

“Babe?” Jared’s voice was muffled as he stuffed himself full of slimy-looking noodles. “Ya okay?”

Jared I’m pregnant. I’m pregnant, Jared. Just tell him, you coward. Jensen took a careful sip of his soda. “’M fine.”

“You sure? You’re not eating. Your stomach still buggin’ you?”

“A little.” A little of the truth mixed in with the lie made it more palatable.

“You said you would go see a doctor,” Jared’s gaze locked with his, stern.

“I will. Just with Kripke and everything…kinda hard to find the time.”

“I know, but, you are the most important person in the world to me, Jen. No account is worth your health.”

I’m pregnant. “I’m…” His heart throbbed and his throat closed up. “This food is making me sick. I’m gonna go watch some TV.” He went into the living room and turned on the television, not really watching it. A few moments later, Jared sat on the sofa beside him, arm around his shoulders. Jensen wanted to sink into his solid warmth, inhale his strong delicious scent, but he sat rigid beside his husband.

Jared reached for the remote and turned on the local Fox station. The World Series was on. The Rangers were playing the Cards, and Texas was down by one. “You want a beer?” Jared asked.

Jensen shook his head. He had to think of some leading questions, gauge Jared’s reaction and interest in children. As Mike Napoli strode to the plate, Jensen swallowed. He had talked to Jason a week or so ago, he was expecting his second child in as many years.

“They’re gonna walk ‘im,” Jared said, shaking his head

“They won’t—not an intentional walk anyway.” Jensen’s voice sounded distant and weak. “Lead-off walks hurt you.”

“Cards know Napoli can hurt you more.”

“There’s no one on base,” he said absently, wiping his sweaty hands on his thighs. Jared shrugged one broad shoulder. “I heard from Jason. He’s pregnant again.” He held his breath while he waited for Jared’s reaction.

“Walked ‘im! I knew it!” Jared howled, as Napoli jogged down to first.

Jensen’s stomach twisted. No reaction, but then Jared didn’t really know Jason that well—or like him seeing Jensen had briefly dated him. “Ally is pregnant, too.”

“That’ll make three for her and your brother, right?”

Jensen nodded, finally a reaction from Jared that wasn’t about the baseball game. With a shaking hand he reached out and ran his fingers through Jared’s long, soft, brown hair. He hoped their baby inherited Jared’s hair and dimples. “It got me thinking about us.”

Jared looked away from the game, eyes sympathetic. Hope flared in Jensen’s chest. “I told you, Jen, I’m more than okay with not having kids. I have you,” he tugged Jensen close to his side, nuzzled his neck. “You are more than enough. I like our life the way it is.”

The hope inside Jensen withered and died, like a flame deprived of oxygen. His hand went to his belly as if to protect the baby from Jared’s words.

“We have a great life. We don’t need the upheaval a kid would bring. Know what we should do?”

Jensen shook his head, his head feeling fuzzy and a buzz of static droned in his ears. He wanted to get out of the room but couldn’t seem to coordinate his limbs.

“After everything gets settled with Kripke, we should go to Europe. I don’t mean to just one city. I’m talking the whole Grand Tour kinda thing: London, Paris, Rome. We could even do one of those Mediterranean cruises if you wanted. Kinda like a second honeymoon. Sound good, babe?”

Jensen couldn’t speak. He had heard from Jared’s own mouth how he felt about kids. They would bring ‘upheaval’ and the way Jared said it told Jensen he hadn’t meant the good kind. He couldn’t tell Jared about their baby now. He wanted to cry and as much as he wanted to blame the hormones he couldn’t. His heart was breaking. What was he going to do?

* * *

Jensen stared at himself in the mirror trying to see if he looked different, had that “glow” of pregnancy so often talked about. He didn’t think so. He looked like he always did; same hazel-green eyes and freckles, his crows feet were a little deeper, but he looked handsome and healthy. He rubbed at one pec, wincing at how sensitive his nipples were, and noted that it felt softer than usual. His gaze drifted lower, the Egyptian cotton towel hung low on his hips. There was a perceptible Buddha belly where once had been a cut and defined six-pack. He was both in awe and embarrassed by the changes his body was undergoing. He had worked hard to turn his naturally willow and lithe Omega body into something muscular, lean, and cut and slowly it was melting away, but for the most wonderful reason.

He was almost five months pregnant. Thankfully his morning sickness had passed and he was constantly horny. Jared’s musky-sweet Alpha pheromones seemed to ooze from every pore. Jensen was a walking hard on and slick between his thighs most times Jared was around. In addition to the changes in his body, there were also changes in his relationship with Jared. Now that he knew Jared didn’t want their baby he found himself pulling away from him. He brushed off Jared’s attempts to initiate lovemaking, and waited until he was sure Jared was asleep before going to bed. If Jared tried to embrace him in his sleep, Jensen would slip out of bed, and go across the hall tot the guest room to sleep. He still wasn’t sure what he wanted to do, other than he was going to keep his baby. At some point he was going to have to come clean. He had briefly thought of just packing and leaving Jared one day, not even bothering with a note, but he was still very much in love with his husband and couldn’t be that cruel to Jared.

“Hey, babe,” Jared wrapped his arms around Jensen, kissed his neck. He wanted to sink into the warmth of that embrace, turn, wrap his arms around Jared’s neck and kiss him, but he couldn’t allow himself. He stiffened, heart beating a ticker-tape pace in his chest, afraid Jared’s hands would go lower and notice his little belly; although, it could pass as the start of a beer gut. “Admiring your perky little nipples?” Jared tweaked one. Jensen cried out and shoved an elbow into Jared’s stomach.

Jared doubled over, gasping. When he recovered he fixed Jensen with wounded and confused eyes. “I’m sorry. I didn’t think I pinched you that hard.” His mouth opened and closed, as if he wanted to say something else but decided not to. “I’m sorry.” He sounded lost.

Jensen’s eyes stung. I wasn’t Jared’s fault, not really. He kept trying, reaching out to Jensen, but Jensen was slowly and surely shutting him out. What choice did he have? When Jared found out the truth their marriage would be over anyway. The idea of losing Jared terrified him, but he wasn’t ready to let him go yet. He thought, fleetingly, as he saw Jared wander aimlessly into the bedroom and sit on the edge of their bed, that maybe what he was doing might be crueler than just up and leaving.

“All right, Jensen, you’ve gained seven and a half pounds since your last visit,” Dr. McCoy said as Jensen stepped off the scale. “How are you feeling overall?”

Jensen sat back down on the exam table and extended his arm so the Andrologist could take his blood pressure. “I feel pretty good.” That was true, physically Jensen felt like he had before his pregnancy but emotionally he was a wreck. The constant lying and hiding was wearing on him. “I’m not puking my guts up anymore. I’m still bloated and sometimes my ankles and hands swell.”

“Your blood pressure is a little higher than I’d like. Are you trying to avoid stress?”

Jensen nodded. “Yeah, but my husband and I are having problems, so it’s not easy.”

“I’m sorry to hear that, but, Jensen, you need to do your best, for you and your baby. Lay back and lift up your shirt.”

Jensen did as instructed and Dr. McCoy palpated his abdomen, making approving noises. Then she took out a tape measure and measured the growing swell of his belly. She noted everything In Jensen’s chart. “Have you decided if you want to have an amniocentesis?”

“No. I know the miscarriage risk is small, but any risk is too much for me.”

Dr. McCoy nodded. “I’m going to have Sophia come in and take some blood and I’ll need you to give a urine sample.” She explained what the blood and urine tests were for. “After, we can take a look at your baby on the ultrasound.”

Jensen wept quietly as his baby appeared on the ultrasound monitor. He touched the delicate newly formed hands with his finger. It truly was a miracle. His baby had grown so much since his last visit. He desperately wished Jared was here with him, looking at the baby they made, borne of their love and passion. A wave of sadness broke over him. Every day that love was waning, every time Jensen moved away from Jared’s touch, though he craved it, every time Jared gave him one of those pitiful hang-dog expressions, silently asking what he had done wrong. Jensen didn’t know what to say or do so he did nothing, and the rift between them was quickly becoming a chasm. At times Jensen wondered if it was worth it.

“Your baby is a little camera shy today, so I can’t tell the gender,” Dr. McCoy said apologetically.

Jensen sniffed and wiped his eyes. He didn’t really care, because like Jared had said over a year ago when they started this journey together—the journey Jensen was traveling and would finish alone—all that mattered was that the baby was healthy.

When Jensen arrived home, Jared was pacing the living room.

“There you are. I was starting to get worried. No one at the office knew where you disappeared to.” Jared crossed the room, moved to embrace Jensen but Jensen sidestepped him. “Where were you?”

“Out. Aren’t I allowed any time to myself?” Jensen snapped. “My life is more than just being your husband and Padalecki Advertising.” Jensen headed into the kitchen. He was starving.

“Will you come sit with me in the living room?” Jared sounded hesitant. It was an odd inflection to hear from the Alpha. “I got something I want to show you, an early Christmas present.”

“I’m hungry, Jared. I want to eat then go to bed.” Jensen-speak for ‘I want to avoid you’.

“Please, Jensen?” Jared was begging and Jensen didn’t have it in him to refuse again.

He followed Jared back into the living room and sat on the arm chair parallel to the sofa. “What?”

Jared’s expression transformed to one of excited expectation. “Remember we talked about going on a Grand Tour of Europe? I talked to our travel agent earlier.” Jensen swallowed, tried to steady his breathing. “The Kripke campaign launches in a week and after….we’re going to be on a private plane to London!” Jensen’s mouth dropped open as Jared slapped down several travel brochures. “And after London, we head to Paris. From there we go to Venice, then Florence and Rome. From Rome we catch the MSC Divina for a cruise along the Mediterranean to our final destination of Greece!”

“No, Jared, not like we talked about, like you talked about! I didn’t agree to any of this.” In truth Jensen was overwhelmed by the scope and effort Jared had put into this. He must have been planning for weeks. He saw the light go out of Jared’s eyes and knew he had broken something in his husband. “Why would you do something like this and not even talk to me about it?”

Jared stood, shook his head, huffed incredulously. “It was a surprise.” His voice was ice. His shoulders shifted and jaw clenched, like he was gearing up for a fight. Some small part of Jensen wanted that, wanted them to fight, then Jensen could leave and this farce could end. Jared gazed down at the glossy brochures for the great European cities then to Jensen and all the fight seemed to go out of him, leaving him flat. “I don’t know what you want anymore. I thought if we could get away we could fix what’s broken between us.” His gaze shifted to Jensen and the pain and heartbreak in his slanted eyes was palpable. “Is there anything to fix?”

Jensen’s throat dried up. He struggled not to let his tears fall. He could feel the best and happiest years he’d ever known hanging by a thread and he himself held the shears.

They stared at each other. Jared cracked first. His mouth trembled. His eyes shimmered with tears unshed. He exhaled a long shaky breath, his expression forlorn, beseeching. “Whatever it was I did, I’m sorry. I love you so much, Jensen. I just wanted to do something nice for you.”

“You wanna do something nice for me? Leave me the hell alone!” He stormed from the room, up the stairs and into the spare room—he really thought of it as the nursery—the bedroom Jensen occasionally slept in alone, and slammed the door behind him. He sank to the floor, back against the door, legs no longer able to support him. He hadn’t meant that, any of it. He loved the idea of going to Europe, having one last blast together before Jensen was too far along to travel and the baby came, but it just couldn’t be. It was getting harder and harder to keep up the lie. If he could just get through the holidays, he would come clean. His belly was growing, soon he wouldn’t have much choice; the baggy clothes would only work for so long. Something had to give.

* * *

“And the focus group’s response to the new slogan has been positive.” Jensen’s voice was even as he addressed Jeff Morgan and Jim Beaver, CEO and President, respectively, of J&J Insurance. The mock ups from the art department were on easels around the room, emphasizing trust and integrity. They were recovering from a bit of a PR nightmare and wanted to revamp their image. Misha Collins, the Vice President of Accounting, was caught embezzling from a company sponsored charity. He had been skimming for years, but seemed to have gotten greedy as well as sloppy when it came to fudging the numbers to cover up his crime. Jensen wasn’t sure if it was ego or complacency. What research he had done on Collins led him to believe it was a little of both.

“Thank you for taking the time to meet with us on such short notice.” Morgan got to his feet and extended a hand, Beaver following.

“Not a problem.” Jensen rose and shook each man’s hand, giving them a winning smile. “Don’t hesitate to contact me or anyone here at Padalecki Advertising with any questions.” Jared was really much better at this than he was but Jared was dealing with Lauren Cohan from Cohan Cosmetics who was a self-important diva and client from hell, but her account was worth a few million dollars. Jared once told Jensen she didn’t like dealing with Jensen because he was so much prettier than her. Jensen had smacked Jared upside the head for that...but he didn’t disagree.

Jensen showed them out of his office with more smiles and reassurances. Once they were gone and he closed the door behind them, he sighed and checked his watch. The meeting ran long and now he was going to be late for his appointment with Dr. McCoy. He buttoned his suit jacket. Nearing his sixth month, it was getting harder and harder to hide his belly. He made sure to always be behind his desk or a table, or chair. He felt like an actor or actress on a TV show trying to hide their pregnancy. Isn’t that what you’re doing, Jensen? Hiding and lying. And waiting for the roof to cave in. Which, by the suspicious glances Jared frequently sent his way, was probably sooner rather than later. The Christmas and New Year’s holidays were over, but Jensen still hadn’t told Jared he was pregnant. He wasn’t sure why not, other than he didn’t want his marriage to end.

He strode down the corridor, giving tight smiles to those he passed. As he was nearing the sanctuary of the elevators Jared turned a corner and saw him. Jensen kept walking, eyes averted, keeping things status quo. As he passed Jared he let out a sigh but Jared’s fingers closed firm around Jensen’s bicep, stopping him. Jensen looked from where he was holding him up into Jared’s face, a cynical mask that did not fit with the man Jensen loved. “Rushing off to meet with a client?”

Jensen pulled his arm from Jared’s grip. “You don’t tell me where you go and when. Why should I?”

I’m not the one keeping secrets.” Jared hissed. He huffed out a breath, shook his head, before he turned and walked away. Jensen stared at his retreating back, wanting so bad to call him back. It had been obvious in Jared’s tone what he thought Jensen was doing. Jensen knew he himself was partially to blame for what Jared was thinking, but it hurt that Jared thought Jensen capable of infidelity when nothing could be farther from the truth.

Jensen arrived at his appointment with Dr. McCoy fifteen minutes late thanks to the overlong meeting and traffic. He sat in the exam room struggling not to cry. Everything was in such a shambles. This was a dangerous game he was playing and he thought, as he stared at the chart of male and female Omega anatomy that it was time to end it. He was going to have to tell Jared and come what may.

The door to the exam room opened and Dr. McCoy poked her pretty dark head in, a calm smile on her face. “Hello, Jensen. How are we today?”

Jensen exhaled, heart heavy. “Tired.” He stood so she could record his weight.

Dr. McCoy nodded, marking down his weight in his chart. “Excessively?”

“No, emotionally.” Jensen rubbed his forehead as he extended an arm so she could take his blood pressure. The room was quiet as she inflated the arm cuff. It squeezed his arm but he tried to keep relaxed.

She sighed and shook her head as she deflated the cuff. “Little high. What did I say about avoiding stress?”

Jensen lay back on the exam table, pulling his shirt up to display his belly. “I’m trying.” It wasn’t easy when you were keeping your pregnancy a secret from your husband who didn’t want children.

“Try harder,” she scolded as she vertically measured Jensen’s belly with a tape measure.

Jensen nodded as she noted her findings in his file. “Any complaints?”

Jensen shook his head. “Not really. Still feel pretty good overall. My back aches sometimes but that’s about it. I thought pregnancy would be worse than this.” He huffed a laugh, running a hand though his hair.

“See how you feel in a couple of months.” She looked over something in his file. “Your glucose readings from your last visit are normal and the quad screening results show no abnormalities with your baby.”

Jensen smiled and petted the tight, slightly itchy, skin of his abdomen. “That’s such a relief.”

“I would like you to give another urine sample, because your blood pressure is staying higher than I’d like. You say you’re having difficulties in your marriage, so it could be stress related, but I want to keep an eye out for Proteinuria, protein spillage, that could indicate preeclampsia. We’ll get that done and then we can take a look at your baby.”

Jensen nodded, eager to see how much his baby had grown in the last weeks. He felt faint little flutters now and again, but nothing like kicks or punches he had been expecting. He supposed they would come later. He was looking forward to it. Dr. McCoy left the room for a couple of minutes and came back with a sample cup and directed Jensen to the men’s room. After he returned the urine sample to her, he climbed back on the exam table and rucked up his shirt.

Dr. McCoy spread the clear gel over his belly with the transducer; slowly his baby came into focus, already so much bigger than before. “Would you like to know the gender?”

He didn’t hesitate. He had a nursery he had to think about decorating and while he wanted to keep things gender neutral he wanted to get a list of names going. “Yes. Yes, please.”

“It’s a girl.”

He gazed in wonder as his unborn daughter moved. He could make out her nose—looked like Jared’s uptilted nose to Jensen, her perfect head and the bones of her spine. She was getting so big and she was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. “Is…is she swallowing? Is that what that motion is? That’s what it looks like.”

“Yes, indeed, she is. She can hear as well, so don’t be afraid to talk to her.”

“And she’s healthy and…” Jensen was overcome and a small sob escaped him.

“Perfectly healthy and on schedule for her arrival in the spring.”

Jensen didn’t return to Padalecki Advertising after his appointment with Dr. McCoy. He stopped by Babies R Us and looked at the cute girlie clothes and toys, mentally picking out what he wanted. Girl or not he was still going to get her a Batman onesie. A sales associate helped him start and add things to a gift registry for his daughter. Before his appointment with his Andrologist he had felt like there was plenty of time to prepare for his daughter’s arrival, but now as he picked out cribs, dressers and changing tables, he realized there was so much to do and time was getting shorter and shorter. Soon he wouldn’t be able to move well enough to paint the nursery, or put up wallpaper and cute little decals. Not to mention putting the furniture together and getting it arranged the way he wanted.

Part of Jensen was wary of buying things for his unborn daughter, in case the unthinkable happened and he miscarried. Maybe it was a little superstitious, but he didn’t want to court trouble. He didn’t want to leave the store empty handed though, so he bought a Winnie the Pooh crib set, including sheets, bumpers, blanket, and a mobile with baby Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger and Pooh. When he arrived home he locked them in the trunk of his BMW and went into the house.

Feeling weary by the weight of his lies he trudged upstairs and to the spare room—his daughter’s nursery. He imagined how it would look painted a soft sunny yellow. He’d decided on a Winnie the Pooh theme and wanted to put up a border of the Hundred Acre Wood. Everything was so different than how he had dreamed it would be. He’d thought Jared would come with him to his OB/Andro appointments. He crossed the room to the bed, rooted around beneath the mattress and pulled out the baby book. He sat down and placed the newest sonogram picture inside. He traced the picture with a finger. His baby daughter, and he would meet her in a few months. He tucked the baby book back under the mattress and went into the room he shared with Jared. It was hard lying next to Jared at night, listening to his breathing, but not always sleep. Jensen was having bad dreams lately and wanted to seek comfort in Jared’s arms but couldn’t. The minute Jared held him close he would feel the swell of Jensen’s stomach and then he would know.

Jensen retrieved a bottle of cocoa butter lotion from the medicine cabinet. He stripped off his tie and pinstriped Oxford shirt. He looked at himself in the mirror, gone were the washboard abs and in their place a definite baby bump. He squeezed out some of the lotion and smeared it on the itchy skin of his belly, sighing at the relief.

He hoped he would be a good father to her, give her everything she would need and raise her to be a good person. He had always thought Jared would make a good father, too, as he was part kid himself. He knew it would be hard doing it on his own but he was better off than some. His daughter was part of Jared and he wanted her to know him. He was such a great person, loyal, smart, and funny, but Jensen wasn’t going to force him into being a parent. It would do his daughter more harm than good. Jensen may have to live with the fact that she wasn’t wanted by one of her fathers, but he was determined she never know.

“Jensen!” Jared’s voice was a shocked gasp.

Jensen jumped as if scalded by the sound of his husband’s voice. Jared was standing in the doorway, gazing at Jensen and his belly in shock and wonder. Jensen thought he saw the corners of Jared’s mouth twitch up into a smile. Jensen had one blissful moment to think everything would be all right before Jared’s gaze hardened and his jaw snapped shut.

“It would seem congratulations are in order.” Jared came into the room, steps slow and deliberate, staring at Jensen’s belly. “Does the proud father know?”

Jensen swallowed hard, the accusation stinging. “You’re the father.”

“Bullshit!” Jared exploded. “You’ve been sneaking around for months. For months, Jensen! All those “meetings with clients” you supposedly had? I checked with your assistant, you never had any meetings with clients, prospective or otherwise. You always cleared your schedule!”

“Just hear me out. I had a reason for everything I did.”

Jared laughed, loud and harsh. “Oh, I bet you did. Going to some no-tell motel to meet your lover?”

“No, no, never.” Jensen felt his eyes fill with tears. Their child moved inside him, probably reacting to Jensen’s distress. He bet his blood pressure was through the roof now. “This baby is yours.”

“If that baby were mine you would have told me! Who have you been fucking? Tell me!” Jared’s voice boomed as he encroached on Jensen’s personal space. Jensen tried to swallow, throat gone dry. He backed away, wrapping his arms around his stomach. He didn’t think Jared would hit him, but he had never seen Jared act this way. He was cold and his eyes cruel. He remembered screaming and trying to get away from the four Alphas who attacked him when he was twelve. He felt like that scared kid all over again. Never thought it would be Jared making him feel that way.

“No one! I swear! Jare—“ Jared snarled, turned on his heel and slammed his fist into the wall with a dull thud. Jensen jumped. He had never seen Jared violent like this, hadn’t thought he was capable of it. It was terrifying. For the first time he could fully appreciate that Jared was bigger and stronger than him, Alpha in all ways. He smelled the testosterone coming off Jared in waves, acrid and sour, nothing at all like his usual musky-sweet scent or the pheromones he emitted during arousal. This was the scent of an Alpha who believed himself to be deeply transgressed.

“This baby is yours!” Jensen had a ludicrous thought about The Bride in Kill Bill, pleading for her life and that of her baby before Bill shot her. “Why don’t you believe me?” Jensen sobbed.

“Wh—why don’t I believe you?” Jared’s voice was in a hysterical register. “Last time we fucked I didn’t even knot you. You didn’t even come to me the last time you were in heat. Stupid me thought you had gone back on your suppressants, but I knew that couldn’t be true because you didn’t have that faint medicinal smell they give you. When was the last time you even let me see you naked? When was the last time you let me touch you, or fuck you? Who have you been giving it up to, huh? Who?!”

“No one, Jared! You’re the only one I’ve ever let knot me, the only one. And my heats haven’t come because I’m pregnant with your baby. Your daughter!”

“Liar!” Jared howled. He stormed over to the huge walk-in closet and tugged out a suitcase and began tossing clothes in it helter-skelter.

He rushed over to Jared, kept one arm wrapped protectively around him stomach, and reached out to touch his shoulder. “Jare, what are you doing?”

“What do you think? I’m leaving your cheating ass!”

Jensen’s heart pounded. Of all the scenarios, reactions, he thought would happen when Jared found out he had never thought of this. Jared looked gutted at the idea that the baby wasn’t his. How could that be when Jared said he didn’t want children?

“You know, Jensen, this is the very last thing I would have ever expected of you.” Jared zipped up his suitcase and dragged it to the door. “Hope the three of you will be very happy together.”

Jensen struggled to say something, anything to keep Jared from leaving. His mouth opened and closed but nothing came out. Tears flowed down his cheeks and sobs spilled from his throat. He went down the stairs as fast as he could, but Jared was already gone, the door slamming shut behind him reverberating like a thunderclap.

Chapter Four

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At : Abilene TX
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