Wanting What She Can't Have - Page 41

He looked again down the corridor where the examination rooms were. Which one was Alexis in? he wondered. Was she okay? What on earth could be wrong with her that they had to keep her so long?

Ruby’s fussing worked up a notch. Raoul felt helpless. He had no idea what to do.

“Maybe she needs a bottle or a drink?” an elderly lady suggested from her perch on a seat near the door.

Raoul remembered the diaper bag that Alexis had put in the trunk of the car. “Good idea,” he said with a grateful smile to the woman and headed out quickly to the car park.

He unzipped the bag with a bit of difficulty and spied Ruby’s drink bottle inside. The baby nearly tipped out of his arms as she reached for it. He grabbed her and secured her with one arm before passing her the bottle. He watched with relief as she jammed it into her mouth and began to drink. Slinging the bag over his shoulder, he closed the trunk and went back into the waiting room.

Settled with Ruby in his lap again he kept an eye on the corridor. People came and went but there was still no sign of Alexis. Ruby began to grow heavier in his arms and he realized she was drifting off to sleep. He took the bottle from her weakening grip and popped it back in the bag and adjusted her slightly so she could lie more comfortably across his lap.

He looked at her face as she slept, a face that was so familiar to him it made his heart ache to see Bree reflected there. But there was more than Bree in her features. There was Ruby’s own growing personality beginning to show, too. She felt so small in his hands, so precious. How on earth could he keep her safe for the whole of her life? How could he keep the bad things from happening to her, the disappointments, the setbacks?

The responsibility was crushing. How did people cope? How did they balance love with care and obligation? He’d thought he and Bree had had the perfect mix of devotion and trust, until he’d found out that she’d kept the truth about her health from him. They’d promised one another to love and honor each other, to care for one another in sickness and in health. But she hadn’t honored his love for her when she’d withheld the risks of pregnancy from him. She hadn’t given him—them—a chance to face the obstacles together.

The all-too-familiar mix of rage and defeat pummeled his gut. She’d left him with the child he’d so wanted, yet was now too scared to love. The sense of betrayal cut as deep today as it had when the medical team had rushed him from the delivery suite and when they’d eventually informed him of Bree’s death, despite all their efforts to prevent it. She’d taken a risk to have Ruby and she’d paid for it with her life. And he was angry. So very angry.

He lifted his head and looked around the waiting room, reminding himself of where he was and why he was here. Again that infuriating and painfully familiar sense of helplessness seeped through him. Alexis was in a room in here somewhere and he had no idea why. He’d been shut out because he had chosen to shut her out of that part of his life, as well. If he’d tried to be more open with her, become a true lover to her, he’d be in there with her—holding her hand, supporting her. Being her partner.

The idea resounded through his mind. Was he even ready to take that step with someone again? He examined his feelings for Alexis. Feelings he had tried to keep at bay, had tried to mask with desire and the purely physical side of being together. But he couldn’t deny it any longer. Alexis meant more to him than a convenient bed partner—way more.

A sound from the corridor to the examination rooms caught his attention and he saw Alexis walking toward reception with a nurse at her side. He got to his feet, carefully so as not to disturb the sleeping child in his arms, and started toward her—catching the tail end of what the nurse was saying as he drew nearer.

“The doctor will refer you through to Christchurch’s maternity services and you’ll need to take it easy for the next few days until the bleeding subsides. Oh, and no sex until it’s stopped completely.” The nurse put a comforting hand on Alexis’s arm. “Don’t worry too much, the ultrasound didn’t show up any abnormalities, but take care and don’t hesitate to call us if you have any concerns.”

“Thank you, nurse,” Alexis said weakly, her face suddenly growing even more pale as she realized that Raoul was standing right there.

He looked at her in shock, bile rising in his throat as he played the words he’d heard over in his mind. Bleeding? Ultrasound? Maternity services? Just what the hell were they talking about?


Tags: Yvonne Lindsay Billionaire Romance
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