Mrs Wentz eyes looked deeply upset, the circles under her eyes similar to those of Pete's.
Bea couldn't contain her procrastination any further and she moved towards him as his eyes stared wide at her, they were stained red and strained with the stress of his demons. He moved away from her and backed up against the space near his bed.
"No!" Bea said firmly and gripped him firmly, her hands clasped securely under his chin, he fought and tossed his head away from hers but she held him tighter.
"Pete look at me!" She whispered, the tears forming that painful lump in her throat, his hands tried to pull at her hands as she held him and she pressed her body firmly against his.
"Pete!!" She almost cried and he opened his eyes and stared at her.
"You're safe here! Don't fight!" She whispered to him.
His Mom moved away from them both and rushed out the room. Pete's eyes followed his Mom as she left the room and Bea pulled him to look at her.
"They wanna section me!" he blurted out.
"I won't let them." She reassured him.
"I didn't want this!!" He hissed at her,
"I know! I know, I'm sorry Peter!" she whispered, stroking over his hair softly.
"I wanted to die!" he reiterated to her.
"No you didn't..." she shook her head, he frowned at her hard.
"I wanted to die!!!" He yelled at her, she shook her head firmly and bit back her tears but they flowed.
"No.." She whispered.
"You're not listening to me!" He growled at her.
Bea knew he was sick, she knew he needed help, she knew he couldn't have really meant what he was saying, she knew how desperate the heart was.
"You listen to me!!" She said, pressing him against the wall firmly.
"You stop this! You stop it now!!" she cried, losing her composure. His eyes were huge as he saw the want in her eyes.
"If you keep doing this - they will section you!" she said to him softly.
Bea turned quickly to see a Doctor standing in the doorway.
"We're OK - it's OK!" she immediately assured the bewildered looking intern.
"Are you sure-"
"We're fine!!" She snapped.
The Dr looked at the two of them, awkwardly pressed against the wall next to his bed.
"Close the door please!" she said softly, he nodded and obeyed her request.
Bea turned back to Pete and looked up at him.
"I can help you through this Pete. I'll get you the best help....but you must fight this tendency, do you understand?"
He didn't do anything, he just stared at her.
"Please!" she pushed the words out through her stiffened lips.
One of his hands came up and he touched her brow softly, stroking down her cheek and over her lips, she closed her eyes and swallowed hard. His fingers strayed over her cheek and back up to her brow and through her soft hair.
"Pete...." She said softly, opening her eyes.
"Get some sleep....You need to rest...." She said, pulling his hand from her face. She helped him to his bed and he laid back, his eyes fixed on hers.
She clipped back in his drips and rigged the machine up.
"You've had major surgery, your body needs to heal." She informed him, almost mechanically. She lifted the right side of his gown and checked his wound.
"Beatrice?" he said, it was the first time she'd heard him says her name in almost 5 years.
"Yes?" she asked him.
He never said anything, he just stared at her. She studied him carefully, seeing all the elements Ayla had inherited from him. A sudden surge of insanity wanted to just tell him now about her, but it was not the time.
Closing the door behind her, she leaned over slightly and touched her chest and the ball of emotion that had slowly rotted her over the last 5 years came out and she burst into tears.
Comforting arms slipped around her and pulled her up straight, not even caring who it was she put her arms around them and held them tight.
"Everything's going to be OK!" the voice whispered, Bea knew then it was Mrs Wentz. Bea didn't answer, she just cried hard. We've all had those tears that don't want to stop, because our heart knows that it's best they just get out.
"Everything's going to be just fine...." She whispered again to her.
Those very words took her back....
"Everything's going to be OK Bea!" her Mom encouraged her labouring daughter.
"Promise me Mom!" she gasped.
"I promise baby!" she replied, kissing her daughter's head. The doctor's carefully administered the epidural into her spine and Bea winced.
After 23 hours of unsuccessful labour, they'd had to make the decision to deliver Bea's baby via caesarean section. She was exhausted and was emotionally drained.
Bea couldn't quite believe her ears when they told her it was a girl. Not only that, but that she was perfectly healthy. No complications at all.
The first time she held Ayla, was the first time she'd cried tears of joy.
"I'm so proud of you sweety!" her Mom cooed over her.
"Are you?" she asked her Mom, a small smile crept over her face.
"Of course I am..." she whispered softly,
Only 6 months earlier it had been a different story altogether..
Trembling hands fumbled for the house keys to her parent's home, stuffing her damp tissue into her hand bag she pushed open the front door.
"Is that you Beatrice?!" her Dad called.
"Yeah!" She called back, walking into the kitchen and gulping down a glass of water.
"How's my beautiful daughter?" her Dad asked, kissing her head as swanned by.
"She's alright!" Bea croaked out, trying to sound stronger than she was. Her Dad stopped and turned, looking at her.
"Where's Mom?" Bea asked desperately.
"In the garden....why?" he frowned, he moved closer to his daughter.
"I need to speak to you both!" she said uneasily, breathlessly.
Her Mom walked in a moment later, pulling off her gardening gloves.
"Baby, you OK - has Pete been in touch?!" she asked, ready to protect her.
Bea's eyes scanned the position of her parents, noting that this would be last time they would look at her and not feel shame. Dipping her head quickly and composing herself.
"Beatrice - what's going on - you're scaring me!" her Mom said suddenly.
"I'm pregnant!" she cried.
And almost immediately her Dad echoed the look of disgust at her.
"What?!" she yelled.
"3 months. I'm 3 months pregnant." She informed them as boldly as she could.
"Oh my God!!" Her Mom said, holding her head.
"How could you be so stupid!??" he shouted.
"I don't know how-" she stopped and pleaded to her parents with her eyes, she was just as shocked at them.
"It's not hard Beatrice! How could you be so senseless!? Are you that stupid??"
"We used protection! Always! I don't know how it-" she stopped, it was useless defending her actions, somewhere along in the way during the last few months, it had happened.
"-I don't wanna hear it! You have thrown away your future! Look at you - you're barely an adult!" he growled at her. She cried, nodding, agreeing with everything he said.
"Does Peter know?" Mom asked, a hand on her hip, classic sign that she was not welcoming this news in any way at all.
"Is it his?" her Dad asked, Beatrice shot a look at him.
"I'm stupid....I'm senseless and irresponsible and foolish....but I'm not a whore!" she said in a stern voice to her father.
Her Mom's hands were pushed against her head and she just stared at her daughter.
"This is the worst moment of my life! This is the biggest mistake I'll ever make.....but you needed to know. You also need to know that regardless of the details of how this happened.....i am still your daughter, the one you raised with morals and self-respect. I am just as disappointed in myself as you are with me. But I will not allow it stop any of my dreams." She explained to them.
Her Dad shook his head and just looked at the ground.
"You've ruined your life." He said coldly.
He turned and walked out the room.
He was right, she had ruined her life, or at least her best laid plans.
"There are options..." her Mom said softly.
"And I only have one Mom....to have this child." She said firmly, ensuring her Mom understood that she would not even entertain a conversation about any escape routes.
Pulling the hat further down her head, she burrowed down and fought the cold rain. Her ambition to avoid Pete at all costs meant using a different coffee shop which was a further 10 minutes down the block. She pulled off the hat and made her way to the register.
"Uhhh.....Can I have....a large hot choclate, cream and marshamallows!" she smiled at the thought of getting it.
"Coming right up..."
"No No! Full fat!!" She said with a little laugh, digging out her purse.
"I'll get it..." the voice said gently, her heart began beating fast. It appeared her heart new first before her brain had even registered.
She shot a look up at him and his beautiful brown eyes smiled at her softly. Bea looked back to the young boy making the hot chocolate and refused to speak.
"What are you doing in this one?" she asked softly.
"Closed...refurb." He explained succinctly. She nodded and smiled politely.
"How are you?" his sincerity requested.
"Ok." She nodded.
"You look good!" he said cheerily. Pulling her jacket tighter across her body she smiled weakly.
"$3.40?" the young boy asked, Pete handed him a $5 bill.
"Thanks." She said and sipped the cream on the top.
"You wanna sit with me?...." he asked, gesturing to his table, only his writing pad on it.
"No." she said firmly, that hurt him, it wasn't hard to tell with Pete, it was all in his eyes.
"Ok." He admitted defeat.
"I have to go." She lied.
"Right.." Pete said, stepping back and letting her get to the door.
"Take care." She said and then she looked at him. Those god damn eyes.
She walked back and leaned up, kissing him firmly on the lips.
"This isn't what I wanted!" he gasped to her, gripping her firmly. She pushed him away.
"Goodbye Peter." She said quickly and rushed out.
It was after that overwhelming encounter she decided she had to be away from Chicago. Getting a direct transfer to Boston, she spent the last months of her pregnancy there. That way, no-one knew and he would never have to be burdened with the news. Her Mom came out to stay with her for the last few weeks and subsequently the birth.
She deferred a year of University and concentrated on raising her baby girl as effectively as she could, working in a clothing store to support herself. It wasn't a luxurious lifestyle but her and Ayla had everything they needed.
Seeing her daughter struggle by was hard for Bea's Mom, Susan offered to have Bea move back in with them now her older brother, Andrew, had moved out and into his girlfriend's place. Bea flatly refused, seeing as her Father could barely look her in the eye.
That evening, Ayla crawled quickly around the small living area. Bea rushed to get the door and she stepped back in shock as her Dad stood there.
"Daddy!" she whispered, she flung her arms around him. He held his daughter tight, having let go of his anger and resentment days before whilst talking it over with Susan. He would not have his daughter in need of anything, especially the basic things to survive.
He didn't say too much, just followed her in and watched as she rushed over to the window and whisked up the small child.
"Dad....meet Ayla!" she said proudly. She'd never seen her Dad cry, but he did cry as he took his first grandchild in his arms and Ayla's eyes studied the soft middle aged man's eyes.
"You are beautiful!" he whispered weakly.
Bea stood back and folded her arms, smiling through happy tears.
He reached out an arm and she stood underneath and it wrapped around her.
"I'm so sorry." He whispered to her, kissing her head softly.
"You don't need to be sorry Dad..." she said back gently, rubbing his back.
"You had every right to be disappointed with me." She admitted.
As a result of that reunion, Beatrice moved back to Chicago when Ayla was 10 months old. She took up her last 3 years of University back at Chicago University. Graduating 3 years later.
"Mom - Grandad won't lemme watch Spongebob!!" Ayla whined.
"Dad - c'mon!" Bea frowned at her Dad. Ayla reached for the remote control and playfully fought with Ayla.
He flicked it back to Spongebob and Ayla clapped.
"Yayyyy!" she enthused her joy.
Bea shook her head.
The doorbell rang and throwing the dish cloth back on the kitchen work top, Bea walked through the kitchen to the front door and opened it wide.
"Hi!" she greeted the woman happily, her face then fell as she recognized the woman from the front desk at the hospital.
"Are you Beatrice Owen?"
She never replied, what use was it admitting you're the third party in their hideous excuse of a marriage.
"You're the woman screwing my husband?" she asked. Bea went to speak.
"Shut up!" she hissed before she could.
"How could you?" she asked her through gritted teeth.
There was lamenting silence as Beatrice thought of a single word to say.
"How could you not know?" Beatrice asked, feeling pity for the betrayed woman.
She hook her head gently and pulled out something from her purse, a pendant necklace hung her finges.
"Take this back...." She said coldly. Bea took the chain from her.
"Stay away from my husband....." she warned.
"No..." Beatrice said.
"How dare you-"
"/You /should stay away from your husband..." she said, this articulate response shocked Michael's wife, Crystal.
The hurt in her eyes was apparent.
Bea stepped back into the safety of her home and closed the door gently.
"Who was that?" Her Dad asked, leaning his head back on the chair.
"No-one...." Bea said tiredly, she clutched the pendant tightly in her palms, then, she slipped it over her head and fixed the bat shaped pendant slightly on her chest.
"You ok?" he asked at her vacant expression.
"Everything will be OK." She smiled slightly.