Chapter 18: Song for the Unknown Child


 

There’s a hole in my heart but the rain just won’t fall

There’s a voice that should speak but it doesn’t that’s all

When it comes to the point I have something to say

But I don’t anyway

There’s a thought in my head with no time to

be used

And I feel there’s a chance but it’s dazed and confused

And I hope and I pray I’ll do something for you

But I never do

Toolayloolay oh little tiny child loolayloolayloolah

And I know that I could and I know that I should

But right now I guess I’m feeling far too good

There’s a way that I feel every time I see out

And the voice in my heart simply just wants to shout

I will hold out my hand I will search for a way

But maybe not today

There’s a child that lays warm and so safe at my side

See how the future is theirs to decide

Do I change how I feel, do I run from what’s real

I’m not so sure any more

Bye bye my angel tiny child, bye bye loolayloolah

 

Song for the Unknown ChildMargaret Urlich


Arriving at the hospital Elliot is all bluster and noise as he shouts at the staff to do something. To save our child. He rants and raves when they don’t seem attentive enough, dropping his mother’s name to anyone who is stupid enough not to listen to the ramblings of a madman.

My tears are like silent assassins, sneaking across my face without warning, building walls around my heart, creating a seclusion into which I can withdraw and hide. There is nothing anyone can say that will change what I know in my heart is happening. My mind chooses denial and nothingness because it is easier here. Elliot’s fear is loud but it doesn’t touch me in this quiet space.

When he finally sees there is nothing that can be done he withdraws into his own silent pain. He can’t talk, he won’t look at me. I see on his face the redundant and useless guilt for not protecting us. As if there were anything he could have done differently. Perhaps he should have locked me up as Christian would have done,keeping me out of the world this week. I thought I knew better, that I was healthy enough for nothing to matter. He took me at my word that everything would be fine. Now our baby is gone and the universe is very much out to destroy our bliss. Everything is my fault and my arrogance has landed us here. I should have done better by him, by our child.

Sunlight streams through the windows onto the pristine white of the hospital sheets. I lie on my side not looking at him. My guilt won’t permit me to look at him, not since around 4am when the doctor finally confirmed that our baby was gone. My system has been flushed, my body is empty and so it seems is my heart. While we clung to hope the tears were constant, now there is nothing. Just this strange blankness in his eyes. Every attempt to touch me ends in me pulling away and he looks lost. I just don’t know how to be here for him. I am hardly available for myself.

ooOoo

Last night I wandered into that garden blind to any danger around me. The worst of the evening was over with the confrontations between Ana and I, Christian and Elena, Grace and Elena, me and Elena. Now I walked down to the boat ramp in the darkness hoping to simply enjoy the gentle sounds of water hitting wood. As I approached the pathway I saw a glow coming from the trees as if someone was standing in the trees and smoking. I wondered if it was one of Christian’s security team, walking the perimeter. Thinking nothing of it I stood in the shadows looking out.

His breath touched my skin before his hands reached my mouth. Dragging me backwards into the trees, he took me completely off balance and I stumbled against his soft body. As soon as I caught his foul stench I knew it was Jack Hyde. My fear was over-powered by revulsion and I felt my stomach cramp painfully. Then I registered cold metal pressed into my lower back.

“I am going to take my hand away from your mouth and you are not going to make a sound. Do you understand?” I hesitate. “DO YOU FUCKING UNDERSTAND ME?” The gun is pressed painfully against my kidneys and he wrenches my head back with his vice-like grip around my mouth. I want to bite his skin but the threat of a bullet in the spine stops me. I whimper into his hand and nod. Show him fear, make him think he has the upper hand.

He releases me completely and I stumble forward, flailing my arms, trying to catch my balance. He knows it is an act and his hand snakes out to catch my arm pulling me back to face him.

“Don’t try it bitch. You won’t get more than five feet.”

“Who are you? Wh-what do you want?” My eyes widen. I try to force tears. He looks at me carefully, confused, concerned. Then his hand reaches out and grabs around my chin. He turns my head roughly from side to side as if examining me.

“You’re the fucking bitch from the club.” How did he know? How could he possibly know? “You were wearing this.” His stubby fingers slip under the necklace and he almost chokes me out. He backhands me across the face and I stumble once more.

“I don’t know what you are talking about. This necklace is a family heirloom.” Hold the lie.

“You’re a fucking lying bitch. Kit St James my ass. Linc is going to have a fucking field day with this.” My body starts shaking for real. If he tells Linc then Elliot will go to jail and I am as good as dead.

“Please, please don’t. What do you want? Please, I’ll do anything.”

“Stupid bitch. What could you possibly do for me? The Grey family have everything, Christian fucking Grey has everything that I should have had. You can’t give me anything.”

“Please, there must be something.”

“Yeah, on your knees bitch.” Oh God, oh no. Please no. His hands go to his zip and I feel the bile in my throat. As if on cue, the nausea hits and I empty the enormous meal I have just eaten all over his shoes. “Fucking, whore, bitch. You stupid little cunt.” He slaps me hard across the face and I fall to the ground. My stomach is cramping painfully and I clutch myself. Then he punctuates his vitriol with painful kicks to my body.

“Tell that big fucking…idiot…boyfriend… of yours… that he is a dead…man. I don’t know what Linc has on him but this should be the fucking…icing… on his cake. And you, you little slut. You’re gonna get what’s coming to you.”

Just then I hear Elliot coming down the garden. I call out to him and Jack runs. But I already know it is too late. I can’t stop the tidal wave of pain that sweeps through my body.

ooOoo

Nurses come and go checking me over. Elliot wants to call my mother but I won’t let him. She didn’t know about the baby, she doesn’t need to know what has happened. The risks I have taken. That I have lost him. I won’t even let him call his Mom. I feel myself withdrawing completely and I can’t let him near. Only the doctors and nurses get to touch me. The bruises on my back should hurt more but I am so numb that I feel nothing. They tell me there is no damage to my other internal organs or my spine. I don’t care.

Finally around 2 in the afternoon they allow me to go home. I am told that I need complete bed rest for the next few hours and to come back for further checks but I should be fine in a day or two. But I won’t ever be fine. We won’t ever be fine, again.

We arrive back at the treehouse and half a dozen concerned faces greet me. Elliot supports me as I walk into the house, and take me straight to our room. I want to tell him I can manage but it would be far from convincing. All attempts to speak about the baby, to share the pain, are shut down. His need to hold me close battles with my need to keep some distance. He can’t get near. I allow Karen and Stella in to see me. Karen feeds me and Stella helps me to bathe. Elliot and I are relegated to spectators in our own life.

By 8pm I have made the decision to go back to my apartment. I come downstairs with my bag packed and ask to drive me home to my apartment. Elliot pleads, begs, cries,threatens. His efforts are glancing blows. Nothing stops me. I simply stand and watch as he throws himself around pathetically. My body is still, my voice quiet and controlled, but my eyes are haunted. I give the excuse about starting work in the morning and needing my work clothes. TJ escorts me away from his life and my heart shatters into a million pieces.

ooOoo

Twenty four hours changes everything. I can’t face Elliot’s pain, it is too great, too deep. If I am honest I knew something was wrong days ago but I kept ignoring my body and pushing through. I should have told him, I should have shared but the attending doctor quietly reassured me while Elliot was dozing in a chair by my bed that there was nothing that would have stopped me from losing my baby. He was attached outside the tube. Losing him was inevitable and all Jack did was finish the dislodgement process. This is supposed to make me feel better but it makes me feel worse, like a defective bucket. Unable to hold anything, completely useless for its intended purpose.

Elliot was so angry at everyone and even if he doesn’t know it yet, he blames me. He doesn’t hate me for this now but he will soon. It seems suddenly clear that the baby has become the glue in our relationship and now it is gone and we are destined to rip apart.

This other fear also grows inside me. Now that Jack has worked out who I am I have become a target on Elliot’s back. Since we have been away and then in hiding, there has been nothing except the charity event we attended prior to the Barbados trip that could indicate that we have a relationship. If I stay with him then the association between he and I will become public knowledge and it will lead Linc straight to him. I have to make it look like our time together has held no significance. That my only association with the Grey’s is through Ana. I don’t know how much Jack saw at Christian’s birthday but I am already responsible for drawing Jack’s attention to myself. I can’t be responsible for bringing attention to Elliot. I have to keep Elliot out of my life.

I walk into my apartment to find Ethan there. He looks at me bewildered by my behavior. When he asks what has happened I simply say that Elliot and I have broken up. That I need some space and I don’t want to talk. He lets me go.

Elliot has called my phone five times and sent ten text messages, each one more desperate than the last. I am a coward. I couldn’t break up with him to his face. Instead I slink away in the night. I won’t think about this again tonight. I climb into bed and cry myself to sleep. I am so afraid.

ooOoo

The world is waiting for me and I have to go to work, to start my new job. I welcome the distraction. As a team of ten interns who are starting together we are taken through induction for the first three days then attached to a news team to observe and support for the remainder of our first month. The work is varied but menial. A lot of note taking, web research, fact checking and coffee collection.

I like the team I am working with. A sassy journalist called Lisa and a strapping photographer called Matt. Ironically they work the society circuit and it doesn’t take long to work out that I have been deliberately deployed for my media and social networks. It only takes three days before they start in with trying to gain all access to the Greys.

“So your flatmate is marrying Christian Grey, huh? Any chance we can get an exclusive?” I have always been called tenacious but Lisa gives this a whole new meaning.

“Um, I don’t think so. Ana is a very private person and Christian has strict protocols around his PR team. I wouldn’t want to take advantage of either of them like that.”

“Oh come on, you must have some influence.”

“No, I really don’t. If they offer it I will let you know but I really don’t like our chances.”

Lisa shrugs and goes back to shoveling her salad into her mouth. Her glasses are perched on the end of her nose as she goes through making notes on the interview transcript I have just done for her from a local actress. Her sly glances my way tell me that she hasn’t finished with this.

Discussions like this are about as animated as I can get right now and I can see by the looks of my workmates that they are wondering how I could possibly be related to Sam Kavanagh. I am wondering that myself. Instead of being social and engaging, I throw myself into endless streams of detail and minutae, hoping to hold at bay the hours when I have to be alone in my apartment to think.

Meanwhile the messages and texts from Elliot mount up. I know that he has been around a dozen times. Sometimes Ethan blocks him for me. Other times, when I am alone, I just know and I wait him out, silently willing him to leave. After three days I begin to work later and later, hoping that I won’t run into him.

In those first few days, Ethan spends a lot of time out with friends. He tries to get me to go with him but once I get home in the evening, I can’t move from the couch. I don’t even sleep in my own bed most of the time. If I do start the evening in my bedroom I will wonder out in the middle of the night and not leave the lounge until my shower in the morning. Ethan notices my odd behavior but it takes until Thursday for him to say something.

“Do you want to talk about this Kate?”

“No, I really don’t.”

“I don’t understand. I thought you and Elliot were okay.”

“Things change.” My mind is screaming out to him. I know you want more, I don’t have more to give. Please don’t ask me.

“What about the baby, Kate. Elliot wanted to marry you.” His voice has become a low whisper. I don’t know how he knew about the baby. I don’t want to think about it.

“Just leave it, Ethan, please.” Retreating to my room seems to be the smartest form of defense.

Two hours later there is a soft knock on my door. I don’t acknowledge it but that doesn’t stop my mother from walking in. The concern etched across her face does nothing to mar her beauty. I wonder if I will ever feel beautiful again.

“Hi honey. We haven’t seen you since we got back.” My father has tried to talk to me at work but I told him I wanted to maintain distance so that I could be taken seriously on my own merits. A partial truth floating in a world of misdirection and lies. There is no excuse for ignoring my mother.

“I’m sorry Mom I’ve just been busy at work.” More misdirection. She smiles the sad smile of a mother who is hurting. Well, fuck it Mom, I was a mother too. I fucking hurt too.

“Baby, you have to talk about this.” My eyes shoot to her face. What? Does everyone know now? “Elliot came to see us. He is desperate to talk with you Kate. He is grieving too and he needs you and you need him.”

“He had no right. He had no damn right to tell you.” Her arms around me in a second, gently rocking me as the sobs come. Next thing I know my bedroom is full of people. Dad has moved to the other side of my body holding me and Mom. Ethan is there in front of me holding my hand and my mothers and there are tears, so many tears but no promises. I promise to see Elliot. I promise to go home this weekend. I promise to talk. I promise myself that I will find a way to make it up to them when I break all of my promises.

Five days have gone by. Five long and lonely nights without his body next to mine. Five empty cavernous collections of hours that stretch for miles without my heart. I miss him. I miss the presence of our angel. I miss the promise of our future. I miss my heart.

I throw myself into my work on Friday, volunteering once again, in spite of the pleas of my family, to work long hours. There is nothing worse than going home. Ana calls and we talk about her life, her plans. I feign interest as I resist her attempts at arranging lunch any time soon. I want to be happy for her and I am but the space where my heart once was makes this impossible. I promise to talk with my mother about the wedding dress. Of course she will help. Of course I will be the maid of honor. Of course I will die inside each time I think of what I have lost and how I can’t tell her.

She asks about Elliot and I pretend, because I have become so skilled at deceptions, that he and I are fine. I am busy, he is busy but we are fine. I want to be. I want him back so much. But Linc has a gun trained on his head and I am the trigger. All Jack has to do is squeeze and we are all dead. Perhaps that would be best. I am so numb that it would be good to feel the pain.

It is nine o’clock and the office is pretty much empty, Lisa and Matt having left hours ago. I told them I would meet them at the bar for drinks but I am still here, staring at the computer screen. Scrolling through hundreds of public records I am searching for the records of the Grey’s births and adoptions. My efforts are kind of fruitless. I find the adoption records for Elliot, since his was an open adoption. There is nothing of any value in Christian’s records since his adoption was closed. My attention has turned to Mia when my phone rings. It isn’t Elliot so I answer it.

“Kate Kavanagh.”

“Kate, it’s Elena Lincoln.” Fuck.

“What do you want Elena?” My voice sounds tired even to me.

“Kate, I…” Her voices falters, unusual for Elena. This immediately puts me on edge. “I wanted to check on you. I was still in my car the other night when I saw Elliot running to the car with you in his arms.”

This fake concern pisses me off. “What the fuck do you want Elena?”

“I…are you okay?”

“Don’t pretend that you give a damn about anyone but yourself, Elena. Don’t pretend to understand what another human being is going through.”

“Kate, stop. Please.” I hear the choked sob in her voice.

“What? Stop what?”

“Just stop. I was worried. Did you…are you alright? Is the baby alright?” I had forgotten that she had overheard our conversation last Saturday night. Another person who had no right to know my business.

“I’m just peachy, thank for asking Elena. And you don’t need to worry your little head about my baby.” Using the heel of my hand I wipe the lone tear out of my eye. “Now if you will excuse me.”

“Kate! Wait! I know what it is like to lose a baby. I know what you are feeling. Please, I want to help.”

Fuck no. You are the last person I want helping me.

“Elena, this is none of your goddamn business. My baby is gone. That is all there is to it. Now stay the fuck out of my life.”

“But that is never all, Kate. It will never be all. When you love a baby and lose it, there is always a hole in your heart that can never be filled. When does the pain get you most? Late at night? Is that why you are still at work?” Jesus, is she stalking me? “In the wee small hours when you imagine yourself holding them in your arms as you sing them to sleep? When does it get you the most Kate? In the morning, when your belly is empty with nothing to show for it? When you want the father of your child and you just can’t have him? But then you can, can’t you Kate? You still have Elliot. Some of us lose everything when our children are lost to us. Or is he gone now too?”

“You vindictive bitch. Elliot and I are going to be fine. We are going to get through this and nothing you, or your ex-husband can do to hurt us.”

“What do you mean my ex-husband?” I hear real fear in her voice.

“Don’t pretend you don’t know that he is threatening us? Don’t you pretend to be innocent in all of this you evil cow.”

“Kate, I swear. I want nothing to do with Linc. I haven’t even spoken to him in years. If he is threatening you then it has nothing to do with me.”

“Oh, I am pretty sure it has everything to do with you, Elena. And when I work it out you can be sure that I will take you down with him.”

“You don’t know what you are getting into Kate. Don’t try to take that son-of-a-bitch on. You won’t win. Nobody ever wins against Linc.”

This stops me for a moment. There is something about her voice, something genuine, that has me on guard. She is terrified of him, I can hear it.

“Well, Elena, if you don’t want to get taken down with him then I suggest that you stay clear of all of the Greys from now on. You are not wanted in their lives. And if we can get the evidence needed to take Linc down then we will.

“Kate…I…” Her voice becomes a whisper. “Be careful.”

The phone clicks off and I listen for a moment to the dead air. Could it be that Elena has nothing to do with Linc’s plans? Why is she so intent on being a part of the Grey’s lives? And what was all the tea and sympathy over my miscarriage?

I collapse down on my chair, my head in my hands. I can’t go on like this. Nothing is right, being without Elliot is meant to keep him safe but he will never be safe until Linc is taken down. I was a fool to think that anything I did would change that. I am a fool to sit here alone late at night pretending that work is going to take the pain away. The only way to move on is with Elliot. I have to find him, talk to him, tell him I am sorry for shutting him out.

For a while I sit at my desk trying to dial his number. He isn’t answering. Then I notice the search I did before Elena interrupted me. On the screen is a Seattle birth certificate for Mia Grey. My mind only barely registers what it is seeing as I slump back in my chair. Holy shit! I quickly save the record to a usb and pack up my things. Elliot still isn’t answering. Where are you?

 

8 thoughts on “Chapter 18: Song for the Unknown Child

  1. Kaz says:

    Sasha… Soooo so good. You captured the sadness and your writing was so sympathetic. Feeling this story is coming to its end jjust hoping they all make it.. Mia grey??? What can it be? Please don’t make us wait too long. x

    Like

  2. caroline miller says:

    great writing can’t wait for the next chapter..so real..i feel for kate and elliot :):):)

    Like

  3. traci says:

    ur writing is outstanding,u r soooooooooooooooo talented,i love ur take on it,thanx 4 writing this 4 us all 2 enjoy 🙂 xx

    Like

  4. 1klkelly says:

    Excellent. Great writing.

    Like

  5. Chris L says:

    The Coventry Carol has always spoken to me deeply. Since my ex and I lost our first child to a miscarriage almost thirty years ago reading or hearing the lyrics always brings back that loss. It is heart wrenching that the loss of their child is separating Kate and Elliot

    Like

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