Eve turned in Julian’s arms and slipped her hands up into the hair at the nape of his neck. “I know that my life has been a mess lately, and that I still have a long way to go to straighten it all out. I just want to thank you for being so supportive and for being there…” She smiled shyly.
“You love me?” He grinned and hugged her close.
“And for being my friend...” Brushing his shoulder with her hand, she teased him as he waited anxiously for her to say it again.
Julian placed his lips on hers to shut her up. She melted in his arms, and when he released her lips, he said, “I love you too!”
Eve laughed. “You always did know how to get me to respond to you.”
“You’re right, I do know you. I remember everything about you: the feel of your lips, the curve of your neck, the sensuous curves of your body…” he whispered in her ear.
Eve sucked in her breath at his seductive tone. “What else do you remember?”
“Hmmm, let me see.” He kissed her neck. “You shiver when I kiss you here.”
Right on cue, Eve shivered, and then laughed. “That’s easy; most people shiver when you kiss the sensitive part of the neck.”
“Oh yeah?” he teased. “How about here?” He kissed her below her throat, steadily moving downward.
“Julian…” she whispered weakly.
Eve shrieked as he bent down and scooped her up in his arms. He was amazed how light she was. He walked to the sofa and sat down, placing her on his lap. “I am the happiest man in the world right now, Eve. I have dreamed of this moment for the last twenty years. The only thing that could make me happier would be to find our son, and for us to be a family.” He played with her hair with one hand and lightly caressed her arm with the other.
Eve swallowed hard, trying to fight back her tears. “I wish with all my heart that we would find him, Julian. I have spent a lot of tears wishing for our son.” She placed her head on his shoulder and buried her face in the crook of his neck.
Julian leaned his head against hers and sat quietly, waiting for the lump in his throat to pass. He hugged her tightly to him, thankful that at least he had her.
As Julian and Eve sat on the couch, Eve’s cell phone rang shrilly. Eve jumped slightly and tried to get to her feet. Julian held her tightly, attempting to keep her from answering.
“Julian, it could be important. Besides, only the hospital and my family have my number.” She smiled sweetly, struggling to get up.
Julian laughed and finally released her. He made her sit on the sofa while he got up to get the phone. He brought it to her and sat down beside her as she answered the call.
“Hello, this is Dr. Russell,” she spoke as she placed her hand in Julian’s.
When Eve started to squeeze his hand tightly, Julian realized that something was wrong.
Eve dropped the phone and jumped to her feet. “I have to get to the hospital, Julian!” she cried, not waiting for him to respond as she headed for the door.
“Eve, wait!” Julian called after her as he closed the phone and followed her. “You can’t drive. I’ll take you.”
Eve nodded her head ‘yes’ as tears streamed down her cheeks.
“What’s wrong, Eve?” he asked in concern as they headed for the elevator.
“Whitney…she’s been in a car accident. She lost a lot of blood.”
“Well, I am sure that you or TC can donate blood. Don’t worry, dear, she will be all right. She is a brave, strong girl.” Julian tried to comfort her as he helped her into his black Mercedes.
Eve sat numbly in the front seat. “We can’t.”
“We can’t what?”
“I can’t give her my blood. Neither can TC, Julian.”
“What? Why not? You are her parents, after all,” Julian stated.
Eve stared out the window in silence for a moment. Finally she said, “Whitney was adopted, Julian. We don’t share her blood type.”
Julian stared ahead in silence, shocked, not sure how to respond. “Whitney was adopted? Why?”
“TC and I tried having a baby when we first got married. After a couple years without success, I was convinced that the drugs and booze I had used had taken its toll on my body, and that I would never have any more children. I convinced TC that we should adopt. He agreed, and we put in an application. It seemed to be an endless wait. The demand for adoption was so high at the time that we felt like we would have to wait for too long. We decided to go with an older child. We were actually surprised when we were offered this black little girl that was three years old.”
“Whitney?” Julian offered.
“Yes, she was the most darling little girl. We fell in love with her instantly.”
“Wow, does Whitney know about this?” Julian asked as he parked the car in the hospital parking lot.
As they rushed to the emergency room, Eve said, “No! And you have to promise me that you will never tell her either.”
“Don’t worry, Eve. Your secret is safe with me.”
As they approached the emergency desk, a nurse called to Eve. “Dr. Russell, I am afraid we have an emergency. We don’t have your daughter’s blood type available. We will have to find a donor.”
“Oh no, did you call TC?” Eve trembled, trying to keep her composure.
“Yes, Mr. Russell said he would be here right away. Don’t worry, Dr. Russell. We will get Whitney the help she needs.”
The door burst open and TC rushed in, with Liz close at his heels. “Whitney? Where is Whitney?” He stopped short when he saw Eve and Julian. “What are you doing here?” he snarled, advancing threateningly toward him.
Liz grabbed his arm. “TC, not now. Whitney needs you right now. He isn’t worth it.” She pulled him away from Eve and Julian.
Eve turned away when TC glared at her as he approached the nurse’s station. “How is Whitney?”
“She needs blood. Is there anyone here with type O negative blood?” the nurse asked.
Startled, Julian looked at Eve. “I have O negative blood,” he whispered to her, not wanting TC to hear him.
Eve grabbed his arm and rushed him to a nearby cubicle. “Will you donate some blood?” she asked, her eyes pleading.
Julian took her into his arms and hugged her. “Of course I will. I have come to care a great deal for Whitney.”
“You have?” Eve asked, confused.
“Yes, but we can discuss that later,” he said as the nurse moved the curtain.
“Everything OK here?” she asked.
“Yes, better than OK.” Eve smiled happily. “Mr. Crane has type O negative blood, and he has agreed to donate.”
“OK then, let’s get started. You will need to fill out these forms first though.” The nurse handed him some papers to sign. “Then we will have you tested and make sure that you are a match and everything checks out. OK?”
“OK.” Julian smiled and took the papers. As he signed them, he heard the nurse inform TC that they had found a potential donor.
“He is type O negative, but we are going to run tests just to be sure.”
“Who is it?” TC asked, sounding grateful.
“Mr. Julian Crane,” the nurse replied.
“What? No way! There is no way that pig is putting his blood into my daughter!” he shrieked.
Eve rushed into the hall. “TC, have you completely lost your mind? We are trying to save Whitney’s life here.”
TC stared at Eve as if in shock. Then he shook his head, as sanity seemed to return to him. “You’re right; I’m sorry. But I don’t want that pig near my little girl.”
Eve shook her head in disgust and turned to leave.
“My lawyer is drawing up papers as we speak, Eve. I want a divorce,” he spat after her as she entered the cubicle where Julian was.
Julian gave the nurse the papers and then turned to Eve as he waited for the nurse to begin testing his blood. “I am so sorry, Eve. You shouldn’t have to go through that at a time like this.” He pulled her into his arms, and Eve cried as she circled her arms around his back.
“She’s going to be OK, Eve. She’s going to be OK.” He ran his hands gently up and down her back.
“Can you go see Whitney yet?” Julian asked.
“No, I have to wait just like everyone else.” She pulled from his arms when the nurse motioned that she was ready to test Julian. “I’ll be right outside if you need anything,” Eve said.
Julian smiled and waved. Then he sat down on the bed and rolled up his sleeve.