If you're into CaReese (as something other than a mixed-gender bromance), please enjoy.
I think there will be at least one more part. And that it will have a happy ending.
Part Two - FYI, the most explicit part
Joss remembered this from when she was pregnant with Taylor: the moment her belly was officially too big to allow her to sleep comfortably. After half a dozen extremely restless nights - during each of which she cursed herself for having been reckless enough to have gotten into this situation, after she’d cursed John for having been conveniently nearby in her moment of weakness – she went out to the big bed and bath store and bought a body pillow. It was no help at all. She’d been a single mom a long time, but had gotten through her first pregnancy only with much help from her husband. A body pillow was no substitute for the real thing.
Carter sighed. She’d just have to bite the bullet and call him, no matter how much it hurt her pride. He’d probably turn her down, anyway. He was probably on a self-appointed stakeout, or sound asleep after a long day of kicking ass. Still, she had to be practical – she wasn’t any good to anyone if she couldn’t sleep more than an hour or so at a time. She was exhausted, and she needed to ask. Reluctantly, she picked up her phone.
He picked up on the second ring. “Joss, is everything okay?”
“Actually – no. I can’t find a comfortable position to sleep in.”
“Do you want me to come over?”
She hesitated. “If you’re not doing anything.”
“I’ll be there in half an hour.”
She hated this. She hated needing anything from him, waiting for him, asking him back into her bed. When she’d made the decision to carry the baby, they’d agreed to keep the complications to a minimum. Still, when he let himself into the apartment, she felt a little pang of longing. It quickly passed.
“I’m here,” he said, “but I’m not sure how I can help.”
“When I was pregnant with Taylor, my husband would let me lie with one arm across his belly. Propped up like that, I could get some sleep without my belly getting in the way so much.”
“You know I can’t be here every night.” Was it her imagination, or did he sound disappointed?
"I know, I know. I haven’t gotten a good night’s sleep in almost a week, John. I’m getting desperate. Could we at least try?"
He nodded. “Of course.” He followed her into the bedroom, where he took off his shoes, jacket, belt and watch. “Which way do you want me?"
“The usual way – on your back, head on the pillow.” He did as she asked. She got in the other side of her bed and pulled the blankets up over them. She could feel the chill of the winter night on his skin, but she’d take care of that soon enough. Facing his head, she draped an arm across his body, resting her face against the hard, flat muscle just below his ribcage. This angle lifted her belly off the mattress enough to take the pressure off.
“Is this okay?” she asked him.
“It’s fine,” he said quickly, so quickly she suspected he was lying. “Joss, you’re so warm.”
“I’m not warm, John. You’re cold, but you won’t be after a few minutes under the blankets with me.
“I remember,” he said with a slight laugh. “Good night, Joss."
“Good night, John.”
Soothed by the familiar scent of his shirt, she relaxed and fell asleep. When she dreamed, she dreamed of being at work, coming across two cold bodies in the field. Her eyes fell on the smaller man first. He lay on his side, the gunshot wounds plainly evident in his chest – John’s enigmatic partner, Finch. She fought back a wave of tears as she noticed five fingers, protectively holding onto Finch, shielding him even in death. She didn’t mean to look at his face. A quick glance revealed blue eyes open, staring sightlessly up at the ceiling. She screamed and fell back into Fusco.
“Joss.” She awoke to John shaking her gently. The sun was up; she must have had a few hours of sleep. “Having a nightmare?”
With some difficulty she sat up, leaning back into him, and he embraced her. It was embarrassing how reassuring this felt. “Pregnancy hormones do strange things to the brain. I’ll be glad when this is over.” She didn’t say what they both knew: even after the baby was born and placed with her adoptive parents – Joss’s cousin Rick and his wife – they’d never stop worrying about whether or not she was safe. This could go wrong in a thousand different ways, but Joss didn’t regret her decision. She knew she couldn’t have lived with the alternative.
“Do you want to tell me about your dream?”
Thinking about it brought tears to her eyes. “Not really. I thought I lost you, that’s all.” Her face pressed up against his chest, she felt him sigh. As good as it felt to be in his arms, he couldn’t truly reassure her; they both knew losing him was a possibility every single day. Hey, it wasn’t like her job was exactly safe either.
“Want to try to get a little more sleep?"
“No. I’m awake now. Thanks for your help.” He showed no sign of letting her go any time soon, and that was fine with Joss. It was nice just to feel his heartbeat.
“I’ll be here whenever I can,” he said.
“I hate to be a burden.”
“You’re not. Don’t ever think that. I figured we’d spend more time together as we got closer to the due date.”
She took a deep breath and tried to keep her tears from falling and soaking into his white shirt. They were skirting a dangerous area here, a relationship that didn’t, couldn’t, shouldn’t exist. At the same time, for very practical reasons, she needed him. The softer places inside her – the places she liked to think came from her overactive hormones – needed to believe they loved one another, at least a little.
His cheek brushed against her forehead. The night’s coldness was gone; he was warm now. “Do you need to leave now, John?”
“Not yet. Finch is hardly ever up this early. Why don’t I make you some breakfast?”
She sat up and wiped her eyes. “I’d like that.” Her bladder wouldn’t let her sit around much longer anyway. “Help me up?"
He got up and walked around to her side of the bed. She held out both hands, and he lifted her to her feet. For a moment, she thought he would kiss her.
Instead, he headed for the kitchen.
(They were from two different worlds - she was Marvel and he was DC.)
...I am mad at Pinterest, though. Yesterday they deleted one of my pins because "we don't allow nudes" but it wasn't a nude. Apparently even lingerie and bathing suits that are deemed too revealing (by whose standard, I'm not sure) can be deleted. I had to go through and delete a bunch of my beautiful nude pins, even though I thought all of them were artsy and tasteful. I mean, obviously the website's owners can make up whatever rules they want - even Puritan rules! - but I think it's more fun to let creative people have, if not free reign, at least close to it. Within reason. I don't want it to be a hardcore porn site, but I'd appreciate it if at least fine art nudes were considered acceptable.