“I understand, little one. I don’t mean to hurt your feelings by pointing out something you don’t know about,” he said tenderly, realizing how she felt. “It’s just that to have missed more than one month should tell you something.”
“What?” Leigha asked naively.
“That perhaps you are with child!” Simon smiled warmly at her, watching the truth of his words sink into her mind.
“I am pregnant?” she asked, stunned by the revelation. “I’m pregnant!”
“All of the signs point to that fact.” He grinned broadly and tenderly touched her face.
“Would it be yours?” she asked, unsure how to figure that out herself.
“I would wish that to be so,” Simon said, growing serious, his eyes narrowing at the thought that it might not be. “That is easy enough to know. There was more than a month and a half between when you were with Robert and when you came to lay with me. Did you have a time of bleeding after Robert left Dagonmoor?”
Leigha noted the troubled look on his face, the pain in his eyes as she remembered that there had not been. The knowledge passed to her face before reaching her tongue, and Simon knew that she was carrying Robert’s child, not his. He got up from the bed and went to stand beside the table, his back turned to her as he tried to control the anger he felt, the jealousy and rage that tore through him. He fought to bring forth his feelings of love for Leigha and to transfer that feeling to the unborn child. Leigha remained in the bed, drawing her knees to her breast as she watched him visibly shake with his battle. Instinct told her to be quiet and patient. Her heart ached, torn between her love for this man and the reminder of her love for another. Unable to bear the silence that hung heavily about her and strained to the limit of enduring the wait of Simon’s return to her side, she buried her face in her hands and wept bitterly. Her sobs broke the spell of anger and cold that had banded itself around Simon’s heart. He quickly returned to the bed and brought her curled, clenched body into his arms, tenderly holding her and speaking softly to comfort her pain.
“I love you, Leigha. Believe me, I love you.” His voice choked in a whisper as he tried to soothe her. “Though I would have wished the child to be of my flesh, I can do naught but love it as my own and raise it as such for it is a part of you as well! I love you, and I will love this child that you bear. Do not worry, for everything will be all right. Perhaps it is best that you will have this part of Robert to remember,” he said slowly, trying to convince his own doubting heart. “I know that you love him, for he has always been the truest of friends to you, but I am also certain of your love for me, and I will do all that I can for you and the child! It will be as my own!”
Leigha looked up with tear-filled eyes into his own misty pools, smiling tremulously as she realized that he meant his words. Her heart leaped within her as she understood that she could rejoice in the fact that she was carrying Robert’s child and not loose Simon’s love because of it as she had feared. Simon would always love her and her child. The world that had spun so crazily, threatening to crash about her moments before, opened and stretched forth its fullest warmth and beauty to her as she smiled and wrapped her arms about Simon’s neck. Tears of joy sprang out to wash and mingle with Simon’s tears as she pressed her cheek against his. She felt complete and whole, safe and loved in his arms, knowing with a final certainty that here was where she belonged, loving Simon forever.
Lee, Virginia (2011-01-20). Dagon’s Blood Kindle Edition.