Chapter 6: I’d Have Baked a Cake – part 9
The thought of her sweet son being partially of an unknown alien race should have bothered Addison, but it didn’t. She’d interacted with extraterrestrials on a few occasions, so their existence wasn’t a shock. And she could feel Jake’s Homo superior side, and the Homo sapiens parts of him and his father.
Instead Shane’s words prompted a rare moment of sympathy. She’d learned to hold her emotions close. Until recently only Ashlynn could breach those walls. Then Jacob, and now Shane, she admitted. Addison paused to study the emotion, rolling it around before deciding it was safe. Acceptable.
After a brief flare of emotion Shane’s mind disappeared behind the cold, slick quietness Addison had experienced when she’d attacked him in the hall weeks ago. It was just as unsettling now, and affected her son this time. Jacob quietly fretted in her womb.
Addison hesitated. Comforting her daughter came naturally. But consoling Shane, after he’d withdrawn? Their relationship was too new, and she’d already exposed too much of herself.
Jacob’s unease spurred Addison into action. She slid her hand into Shane’s. Shane, come back, please. His mind remained hidden, but he turned his head to look at her. The emptiness in his eyes was chilling. “He… he’ll be like you. He’ll need you. I shouldn’t have…”
Addison rubbed her belly with her free hand as she figured out what she was trying to convey. “He’s not a pawn, and I should never have used him that way. He’s your son, and there’ll be things that I won’t be able to give him that you will. He’ll need you. And neither of you will be alone.”
The last bit slipped out. Addison hadn’t meant to go that far. She was walking the line between protecting herself and branching out in a new direction. Nevertheless, Addison squeezed Shane’s hand. Come back to us now?
Addison’s final question was the watershed. It had been so long since anyone had wanted him, physically and mentally, for something other than his intellect, psychic ability, or sex. Addison and Jacob simply wanted him.
The void melted away, replaced by all of the confusing/wonderful/scary emotions that his son and Addison prompted. Their welcome brought tears to Shane’s eyes. Although he refused to shed them, his expression and roiling emotions more than gave them away. For once he didn’t care. He came to them naked and vulnerable and they accepted him.
Shane kissed Addison’s forehead, then moved their clasped hands to her belly. Jacob squirmed happily beneath them. “Hiya, kiddo,” Shane murmured. “I missed you, too. Are you going to come out and play sometime?”
Addison chuckled. “Soon. Very soon.” Jacob kicked and Addison winced. “Feisty,” she grinned up at him. Shane’s heart sped up when her grin turned amorous.
Shane stopped himself before his hormones took over. “One more thing.” He telekinetically summoned the silver prism from his pocket to his free hand. Addison frowned at it curiously. My father left this for me. Shane mentally connected with the crystal, shivering from how everything he felt from Addison and their son was amplified. After caressing both of their minds he continued. Only I can use it. Jacob will, too, once I teach him.
Shane shifted his attention to their son, who radiated happiness and love. Letting instinct guide him, Shane touched his alien side to Jacob’s. Don’t be afraid. This part of us makes us strong. The child agreed with wholehearted trust.
Addison’s fingertips on his cheek startled Shane. “You’re crying,” she murmured.
“Yeah,” Shane whispered, not chagrined in the least. After a final touch of Addison’s and Jacob’s minds he let the prism dim and silence. Although his mental awareness of them diminished, he didn’t feel separated. The underlying connection remained.
Shane’s openness prompted a flight or fight response in Addison. Triptych had taught her to trust no one and rely on herself. Everything else was a wildcard. Yet Addison stayed. This madness with Shane was new and frightening and strangely desirable.
Addison traced the path of Shane’s tears down his cheek, then leaned in to kiss away the tears. Gratitude joined the tumult of Shane’s emotions. Heart pounding, Addison kissed down his cheek and pressed her lips against his.
When Addison’s lips touched his, Shane finally understood what all of those writers, poets, and artists were trying to describe. In school he’d drummed his fingers through literature and art classes, waiting for the hormonally inspired drivel to be over. Math and science explained everything, he’d thought.
A multitude of hormones and enzymes were having their way with their bodies, but there was more to it. Excited and happy and scared, Shane threw himself into the moment, returning Addison’s kiss and twining his mind with hers. The boundaries between them blurred before they’d shed their clothes and entangled themselves on the couch. Ironically, feeling Jacob in the back of his mind wasn’t weird at all. He was a beacon of security and hope.
For the first time in his life, Shane let go. He gave himself to Addison and Jacob, physically and mentally. For them he’d be more than a career ladder-climbing scientist. He’d be a father and partner, figuring it out along the way.
Addison’s reservations fell away, and she surrendered to Shane completely. She’d never before opened herself so much, and never dreamed of receiving the same in return. Their bodies moved together and minds mingled, climbing to a dizzying, blissful peak.
When the world came back into focus, Addison felt Shane’s warm, firm body curled up behind her. Purring, she leaned into him and wondered, Why did it take us so long to get over ourselves?