Time frame: post fourth season
The couple sat in the darkened room, their hands lightly clasped together. He'd been ten minutes late, but that didn't matter now. All of their attention was focused on the small screen just a foot and a half away; there was no room in their minds for other thoughts at that moment. They sat staring, fascinated at the fuzzy, changing images on the screen.
For Lee Stetson, this was another first in a year and a half full of firsts. The woman whose hand he held was responsible for all of them. Well, most of them. This one, for example, she most certainly had some help with. Had someone told him just five years ago where he'd be today and how content he would be with his life he never would have believed them. His conversion from a self-confirmed loner to full-fledged family man still amazed him. He watched, transfixed by the living proof of their love that shone forth from the monitor in front of them.
For Amanda Stetson, it was a different kind of first. Sure, she'd been married before, but sometimes she almost felt like it had all happened to a different person in another lifetime. She had been so young; they both had--so unprepared for the harsh realities of marriage and family. Not that she regretted any of it, by any means. If she had never married Joe she wouldn't have had Phillip and Jamie, whom she loved unconditionally and always would. Even though that marriage ended in divorce it had been a relatively friendly one and she and Joe somehow had an even better relationship now than they did when they were man and wife. But her relationship with the man sitting next to her in the dark was more than she had ever dreamed possible. Together they completed each other in a way she and Joe never had. And now, gazing with him at the flickering images on the tiny screen, she felt a contentment she had never felt before.
"Everything looks just fine," the technician said, turning to the couple and smiling. Amanda breathed a small sigh of relief, and Lee squeezed her hand gently. "Would you like to know the sex?"
Lee and Amanda looked at each other. They'd been debating the
question for the past week. Dotty, as usual, was quick to voice her
opinion. She was dying for a granddaughter to dress up and fuss over;
she wanted to know right away. Another grandson would be fine too,
of course, but a little girl…she always got a wistful look in her eye,
just thinking about the possibilities. Phillip and Jamie agreed that
in a year full of surprises one more wouldn't be the end of the world,
but on the other
hand maybe it would be nice to know ahead of time. At fourteen and twelve they had been more than a little unsure of their mother's new marriage, but seeing how happy she was with Lee they gradually came to accept him as a member of the family. Amanda wavered in her opinion--on the one hand, she had been surprised with both of the boys, but technology had come a long way since her first two pregnancies. Perhaps it would be a good idea, knowing what to plan for. Lee wanted to know,
definitely--some days. Other days, he thought it would be nice to be surprised. With the roller coaster his emotions had been on lately, one would think he was the one affected by prenatal hormones. It didn't really matter, after all--boy or girl their child would be perfect. He gave Amanda's hand one last squeeze, and they both turned shining faces toward the other woman.
"Yes," they said together.