I’ve been throwing up for just over a week now with no change. My breasts hurt, I’m tired all the time, and I’m moody as hell. Eric has the patience of a saint for dealing with me all week.
Our kid less Friday night wasn’t a complete bust. I felt good enough to go out to a quick dinner and after throwing it all up Eric and I had a quickie, only because I was scared to throw up in the middle of it. The really odd thing is, Eric hasn’t been sick at all. The kids haven’t been sick either.
It isn’t until I walk past Maudette at work eating a slice of mushroom and ham pizza that I have an epiphany. I want the pizza; I want it because the mushrooms look amazing that I realize I might be pregnant. I’ve been off of my shot going on three months. Eric and I love condom-less sex so much we have as much of it as possible.
I decide to send Eric a text message right away.
Me: Taking a pregnancy test after work. I just wanted mushrooms.
He doesn’t text back. He calls.
“It hit me like a ton of bricks,” I answer in lieu of hello.
“I thought it was supposed to take like six months for the birth control to leave your system,” he says. He sounds a little panicked.
“You and me both, nothing is perfect though,” I tell him. “I don’t know for sure though. I’ll pick up a test on my way home from work.”
“Okay,” he says. “Did you eat the mushrooms at least?” I can hear his smile.
“No,” I giggle, “I really wanted to though. If I’m still in the mood we may be having a mushroom pizza from Paesano’s for dinner.”
“I’m not sure Jo will be down with that,” he laughs. “No throwing up today so far?”
“Not yet, but some extreme nausea a little bit ago.”
“Did you get sick a lot with Jo?”
“I spent my entire pregnancy sick as a dog. If I am pregnant this one is already better,” I tell him. I blame Sam’s evil genes for my sickness.
“I’m sorry, Toots. Hopefully it won’t be as bad this time.”
“I was in a bad place when I was pregnant with Jo,” I admit. “I think if I am this will be a much better experience.”
“I hope so,” he says.
“You if I’m pregnant we’re eloping, right? I don’t want to look like a moose in my wedding photos.”
“I’m okay with that.”
“Okay, baby, I love you. I’ll see you at home.”
“I love you too. Have a good afternoon,” he says and then hangs up.
The rest of the day goes by in a blur. All I can think about is the new baby I’m most likely carrying. When I found out I was pregnant with Joey I pretty much went temporarily insane. I was mad, sick; I talked to myself some days. The depression was even worse. As soon as she was born though it all went away. I had a mild case of postpartum depression, but with my parents’ help and my little angel growing and becoming such an awesome little thing it didn’t last too long.
This baby is going to be different. We’re actually trying to have this one, and if I’m being honest I was planning on giving Joey up for adoption my entire first two trimesters. By the time I had her we’d bonded somehow. Maybe it was the crazy I was feeling, maybe not, I really don’t know. I’m glad I still have her though.
After work I swing by the drugstore and pick up two tests. You never know when one will be wrong, so the odds of two or more is unlikely. I still want the mushroom pizza so I do stop by Paesano’s and get a small mushroom, a small cheese, and the braised pork dish Eric likes so much. I have Joey with me, and she spends the whole time at Paesano’s greeting the new guests that walk in. She can be a little too friendly sometimes.
When we get home Joey runs off to play and I take the food to the kitchen. Eric should be home any moment so I’ll wait for him to take the tests. If they come out negative I’ll be calling to make a doctor’s appointment to figure out what in the heck is wrong with me.
Eric comes walking in right on time with a nervous smile. We’ve been trying to have a baby, but neither of us expected this to happen so soon. Also if I am pregnant that will leave most of the moving to Eric. At this point in the pregnancy too much heavy lifting is a bad thing.
“Hey, handsome,” I smile when he walks in.
“Hey,” he smiles back and comes over to give me a kiss. “What’d the test say?”
“I was waiting for you to take it.”
“Oh. Okay,” he nods. “You got your mushrooms, huh?”
“Yes, sir, I also got you the braised pork. I’ll be back in a second and then we can eat,” I tell him and grab the paper bag off the counter with the tests.
I slip into the bathroom and as I hear Jo running through the house to greet Dad. I really don’t think I could love this man any more than I do. I take off my work clothes, take the tests and then set them on the counter while I wash my hands and face. I go out to the bedroom and slip into some PJ’s and then head back out to the kitchen.
“Do you want to come look with me?” I ask Eric. He has a mouth full of shredded pork and Jo is picking at his noodles.
“Definitely,” he answers.
“Daddy and I will be right back, Jo,” I tell her and she nods as Eric and I head back to the room. “Do you want to look first?” I ask him before we walk into the bathroom.
“You can do it,” he says and kisses my head.
I step into the bathroom and study both tests. I pick one of them up and take it back to the room.
“What are your thoughts on this, either way? Are we really ready for one of our own or do you think we should wait longer?” I ask him. I just want to keep him in suspense a little longer.
“I think it’s faster than we thought, but I want kids with you. If it’s negative, we’ll keep trying. If it’s positive, you just became a superhero in my eyes.”
I close the small gap between us and tilt my head up to kiss him. “Then you better find me a cape, Daddy,” I whisper against his lips and press the positive test in his hand.
He doesn’t even look at the test. Eric grins and kisses me sweetly.
“I love you, Toots,” he says and hugs me tightly.
“I love you too. I’m just glad we know why I’ve been so sick,” I say as I hug him back. “Should we wait a while to tell people?”
“At least until you see your doctor,” he says. “I don’t want to rely just on a home pregnancy test.”
“Right,” I agree. “We cannot let it slip in front of Joey,” I smile. That girl couldn’t keep a secret if her little life depended on it.
“If Jo finds out the whole world will know in minutes,” he chuckles.
“Come on, let’s go eat. I have mushrooms waiting for me.”
Dawn is the only person I told about the pregnancy, simply because I needed to explain why I’ve been so sick and why I need the second half of the day off for my doctor’s appointment. Eric doesn’t have to come with me, but he insisted that he be included on everything we do for this baby. We both had undesirable situations with our first kids, so this will be like a whole new experience for us.
We meet at Dr. Lugwig’s office thirty minutes before our appointment and by my own calculations I should be at least seven weeks along. I’ve never really paid attention to my cycle because I only got my period once every three months while on the shot. Technically I missed a period and didn’t think twice about it.
“How far along was Aude when she told you she was pregnant?” I ask once we’re checked in and waiting.
“Did you go to all of her appointments with her after that?” I know a little about their situation, but not everything. I’ve never really asked.
“At first I was too freaked out by the whole thing. Aude had decided she was keeping Jake with or without me in the picture. It took some time and a few lectures from my parents for me to come around,” he admits. “I missed the first few appointments, but I was there for everything in the second half.”
“That’s good. It had to be pretty scary for a nineteen-year-old,” I nod. “I’m glad you came around. He’s a great kid. I’m glad you’re here for this.”
“I’m glad I came around too. Jake’s my boy,” he smiles and takes my hand. “Think this will be another boy? I think Jo would like being the only girl in our lives.”
“I think you’re just scared of more girls. Your poor heart couldn’t handle it,” I smile and bring our hands up to kiss his.
“I’m afraid of how expensive it could get. Aunt Pammy already told Joey that all girls love shoes.”
“Really? I knew letting them be alone together for more than two minutes was a bad idea,” I giggle. “I’m also sure Pam could find a way to corrupt our boy.”
“Oh she’s already hoping I have at least one gay son,” he tells me.
“Figures,” I snicker. “Honestly, I don’t care what we have.”
“I don’t either, but just one at a time would be good.”
“Do twins run in your family?”
“On my dad’s side.”
“You could’ve told me before I offered to get knocked up by you,” I deadpan.
“Too late now,” he smiles. “My grandma is a twin and my dad has identical twin sisters.”
“Oh good gravy,” I laugh. “My luck you’re giving me triplets.”
“Hey, it’s up to your eggs,” he chuckles.
“We don’t have any twins that I know of. Let’s hope we’re okay.” Before he can respond my name is called and I give his hand a squeeze. “You ready?” I whisper.
“As I’ll ever be.” Eric stands up and follows me back to the exam area.
My vitals are taken on the way in. I’ve lost a little weight, probably from throwing up so much, but I remember dropping a lot of weight when I was pregnant with Joey and she came out fine. My blood pressure is good as well as my temperature. When we get back to the exam room the nurse takes my blood to test and I’m handed a paper blanket for an internal exam. This should be the only one I have until I give birth unless I have any complications.
“You wanna play doctor?” I ask, waggling my eyebrows at Eric when the nurse leaves.
“I think that’s how you ended up here, Toots,” he smirks.
“Nope, I think it was a quickie when the kids were napping. Either way, it’s not like you can get me pregnant again.” I kick off my shoes and Eric places them on the floor next to him and I slip of my bottoms. I hop up on the table and say, “This is actually a little awkward, but you’ll see worse in a few months.”
“Been there, done that,” he shrugs.
Before I can answer Dr. Ludwig walks in. “It’s been a while, Miss Stackhouse,” she says and nods at Eric.
“I didn’t expect to be here for a pregnancy test ever again, that’s for sure,” I tell her as I lie back on the bed.
“Betsy said you took two home tests that came out positive?”
“Yep. We thought it would take longer for the depo to wear off,” I say. I don’t think I should’ve gotten pregnant so soon.
“Every woman’s body is different,” she reminds me.
“True, Dr. Ludwig, this is Eric, my fiancé,” I say, introducing Eric.
“Good to meet you,” she smiles and snaps on a pair of exam gloves.
“Likewise,” Eric says.
“Alright, little girl. You ready?” The speculum freaks me out. I always think it’s going to pinch me, but I give her an affirmative sound.
“Are we going to do an ultrasound too? I know it’s early, but I would at least like to see the fuzzy screen to know I have something in there.”
“We can,” she says and I shudder when I hear the click.
“Eric, do you have any first trimester questions for Dr. Ludwig?” I ask him. I just don’t want to think about her poking around inside me.
“Not that I can think of,” he says.
“Well, shoot,” I giggle nervously.
We all go silent as I take deep breaths while she checks me out.
“All done, kiddo. Looks like we’re going to be picking names here soon. I’ll have Betsy bring in the ultrasound machine. If you want you can put your pants back on, but leave them unbuttoned,” Dr. Ludwig says as she pulls off her gloves and throws them away just before she leaves the room.
“Did she mean first and middle names or more than one first name?” Eric asks.
“I hope first and middle, but we can clarify when she comes back.” I slide off the table and Eric hands me my clothes. This is a little backwards, but now isn’t the time or place for that.
There’s a small knock on the door a few minutes later and Betsy wheels the cart in with the ultrasound machine. I wait for her to put the stirrups away and I lie back on the table again.
“We get to see our baby,” I smile at Eric. “Are you excited?”
“Of course,” he smiles and takes my hand.
When Dr. Ludwig comes back she adjusts my pants and applies the warm gel to my belly.
“Watch the screen. I don’t think we can hear the heartbeat right now, but you should be able to see it,” she explains.
We watch with rapt attention as she moves over my stomach and then she pauses over a little flickering orb. Make that two.
“Eric Northman, I am going to kill you for this,” I smile up at him. With two of us and Miss Helpful at home we’ll be fine with twins.
“I told you it’s your eggs,” he laughs and leans down to kiss me.
“We won’t be able to tell if they’re identical until we find out the sex. If they’re different, then we’ll know. We may have to wait until they’re born though,” the doctor explains.
“Want to tell the kids when we pick up Jake?” I ask. Joey’s been questioning us for a while about my nausea.
“If you want. How far into the pregnancy are we?” Eric asks.
“Going by their size and Sookie last menstrual cycle I’d say right around eight weeks. You’re a fertile one, kid,” she tells us.
Eric laughs and says, “Then I really should have told you about the twins in my family. I just thought you knew my aunts were twins.”
“Huh, I guess they do look alike. Molly has the perm and Dolly smokes…” I really never put two and two together.
“Right,” he says. “Dolly is the one with that asshole banker son who clears his throat constantly.”
“Can I Amelia him? I want to punch him in the trachea just once,” I giggle. Amelia and I still don’t get along and I haven’t gotten any nicer.
“Maybe you’ll finally clear out whatever is trapped in there,” he chuckles. “Maybe it’s his ego he’s choking on slowly. His sister is a sweetheart.”
“He hit on me at your Mom’s birthday party. I think he had one too many shots of Jack. I don’t think he remembers, otherwise I would’ve told you.” Dr. Ludwig prints the ultrasound pictures and leaves us alone so I can get cleaned up.
“He hits on you again and I’m going to let you hit on his neck.”
“Yes, sir,” I grin as I button up my pants. Eric hands me my shoes and I slip them on as well. “I love you,” I remind him just before I open the door to exit the exam room.
“I love you too, Mama Bear.”
It took a couple days for it to sink in that Eric and I are having twins. We’re happy just to be pregnant, but having two is a big deal. We’re excited though. Now we want to tell the kids so Jo can stop asking why Mom is so sick all the time. My poor girl has drawn me more horses than I know what to do with. I love each and every one of them though. The really good ones are up at work along with a couple on the fridge.
Eric had to work late so I picked up Jake for him and by the time he gets home I have enchiladas in the oven. I have to make them mild for my little one. She’s a wimp compared to Jake’s palate of steel. I also decided on a chocolate cream pie because I’m craving it. Jo already knows something is up, but she hasn’t probed me too much.
“Dinner’s almost ready,” I say over my shoulder when Eric walks in. “The kids are living room, tearing it up, no doubt.”
“Smells delicious. How are Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum doing?” Eric pauses to kiss me.
“Loud, you can’t hear that?” They still don’t know how to use inside voices. “Jake made you that,” I point to the palm print turkey he made in preschool that Aude sent home with him.
Eric looks over and smiles. “That’s cool. I was talking about the twins, though. I can hear the others.”
“Oh,” I blush. “The twins are good. They aren’t making Mom too sick today.”
“Good,” he says as he rubs my stomach.
I tilt my head back to kiss him and ask, “Can you wrangle the livestock. Dinner will be on the table by the time they’re done washing their hands.”
“Yes, dear.” I get one more kiss and then Eric goes after the kids. “You have ten seconds to hide or whoever I catch gets tickles!” He calls out.
I love that man more than anything.
I take the enchiladas out of the oven and set them on a wire rack to cool. I get their drinks on the table, water for Jo, milk for Jake and a beer for Eric. When they come running into the room a few minutes later they find their chairs and I start dishing up the plates. Jake eats almost as much as Eric and it concerns me. If we have boys I might have to take a second job just to feed them.
“Jake, do you want hot sauce?” I ask. I eat so much hot sauce right now I think I need to take out stock in the Chalula company.
“Yes, please,” he says politely.
I grab the hot sauce and take my seat. I hand it to Eric to put on Jake’s food and before I can say anything Joey is blowing on her first bite.
“Dad and I have something to tell you guys,” I tell them.
“We’re getting a puppy?” Jake asks hopefully.
“Not right now, buddy. Maybe when you and Jo get bigger and can help take care of it more,” Eric answers.
“A pony, it’s easier to take care of,” Joey pipes up.
“I highly doubt that,” I laugh. “No, but we are going to give you new siblings… ah, two new brothers or sisters,” I clarify.
Joey blinks at me a few times. I can see the wheels turning in her little head.
“I’m going to be a big sister again?” she asks. Jake has too much food in his mouth to comment without it falling out.
“Yes, that’s why I’ve been so sick. The babies are starting to grow and Mommy’s body is changing to take care of them.”
Jake puts down his fork and casually says, “My Mommy had a baby in her tummy but it went away.”
I instantly cover my gasp with my hand. Aude didn’t mention she was pregnant to me, and I don’t know if Eric knew.
“She did? When was that, buddy?” Eric asks. He looks as surprised as I feel.
“Before we went to see Uncle Dave,” he answers. That was back in July.
I have no idea how to respond. I want to cry. I don’t think Aude would have an abortion, and I can’t even imagine what she might still be going through emotionally. We aren’t the best of friends, but I care about her.
“Will the babies in Sookie’s tummy go away too?”
“I hope not, honey. I want to make you a big brother,” I tell him.
“Okay,” Jake says, and resumes eating.
“Do you know if they’re boys or girls? Can I help you with them when they’re born? How did they get in there?” Joey fires off and it’s my turn to blink at her.
“Umm… we don’t know, of course, and I’ll tell you when you’re older,” I answer.
“Can I see them?”
“Not yet, but when they get bigger you’ll be able to feel them move around in my tummy,” I tell her.
“Can I tell my class?”
“Are you going to tell them anyway?” I ask, knowing she has zero filter and can’t keep a secret.
“I think someone’s getting super glue for her loose lips for Christmas,” Eric teases her.
“And mittens for her pinchers,” Jake adds.
We answer about a million more questions from Joey before dinner is over. Eric is sweet and does the dishes after we eat dessert. The first reveal went relatively easy. I know when we tell our parents they might throw parties. My mom has been asking for more grandkids since Eric and I met. I think what worries me the most is telling Aude. I know life isn’t always fair, but it’s been less than six months and I know if the tables were turned I would be happy for her, but it wouldn’t be very easy on me. I’ll leave it to Eric to tell her. She’ll find out soon enough anyway.
After Jo talks our ears off at bedtime, Jake gets up to climb into her bed and we just leave him. There’s no point in putting him back in his bed anymore. Eric and I sit on the couch to wind down a little with a movie and I end up passing out on his shoulder. I wake up to Eric lifting me up into his arms. I just snuggle in a little deeper into his chest and I don’t even notice when he puts me in the bed. I’m way more tired with this pregnancy than I was with Jo, but then my body has to figure out how to compensate for two little bodies instead of one.