Another Heartbreaking Return
Returning home from another crisis Derek Wildstar and Nova face heartbreak and dilemnas after the Black Nebula Empire was defeated by the Star Force….
She waited for his call for days. Only seeing him on the day they returned from space, Nova stopped worrying and was now furious as why. She got only a short glimpse of him when they met in EDF headquarters for their debriefing and she hasn’t seen him since. She longed to touch him again after being held captive by Alphon in the Senator’s apartment that looked over the city. Given 2 weeks off, she tried to keep busy. She knew that he would be with the Earth Defense Council being debriefed on what happened on the Black Star Cluster planet. But that was almost 2 weeks ago. It couldn’t possibly take that long for him to come see her. It was 1:30 in the morning when she heard the phone go off. With a sleepy voice she answered annoyed as to who would call so early in the morning. “Hello!” she snapped into the phone.
The sound of his voice made her sit up tears starting to come down her face. “Derek! Oh my god, where are you? How are you? Why haven’t you called me?” She babbled questions at him, excited to hear his voice.
“I’m fine baby. I’ve left a surprise on your door step if you can go get it.” He said missing her so much. Quickly she got up, threw on her robe and ran for the door. Throwing it open she cried harder, dropping the phone to see him standing there. She fell into his arms tears streaming down her face as he held her tightly in his arms. “Shh, baby its’ okay. I’m home.”
“Where have you been? I’ve been waiting to see you for days!” She snapped as she pounded her fist on his chest.
“I’m sorry I’ve been caught up with the Council about what happened. I know I should have called you but I….”
She could see the pain in his face and brought him closer. Holding him tighter not wanting to let him go she said. “Come inside…I’ll make some coffee.”
“No thanks. I’ve had enough of coffee for awhile. I’ve been living on it for days. How are you? I’ve missed you so much.” He whispered into her ear.
“Oh Derek, I didn’t know what was going on. I thought they shipped you off again!”
“Sorry, trust me I tried to call so many times.” He said then looked deep into her eyes. “I thought I lost you that day on the docking bay. I try to jump down to get you but Homer pulled me back in. I almost went insane knowing that our enemy might have tortured or killed you! And when no one knew what happened to you I only wished that you had managed to escape. I knew in my heart that you were still alive, but they considered you MIA or dead. What happened to you? No one wanted to tell me anything. General Singleton only said you were captured by the enemy.”
She took a long swallow and began to tell him what happened
to her that day. She dreaded this day, but she knew it was best to tell him
everything and let it out in the open. “I remember the ship taking off…after
that I passed out. When I woke up I found myself in an apartment high above
Derek stared at her listening to everything she said. What would he have done to save their planet? Would he have slept with the enemy to get the information that he needed? Feeling a little angry that she was willing to give herself to someone else…when she hadn’t even given herself to him yet… he looked away from her finally. He thought of how she always told him that she wanted to wait until they were married and now she told him that she would have given herself to that enemy officer without hesitation. The pain of her being with someone else made him stand up and walk across the room. He stood quietly staring at her trying to gain his composer. “Derek, say something please.” She pleaded with him.
“What would like me to say?” he said with anger. She quickly got up and ran to him. Taking hold his arm he pushed her away. “Nova, please just give me a minute. This is not easy for me right now.” He said as he soaked everything in. Taking a deep breath he had to know the outcome of her captivity. “Well ,did you?”
“No Derek, he told me to go. He said that I could have the code…but only if I defeated him in battle. Only then would he give me the code to defuse the bomb.” Still quiet she felt her heart beat faster as what more to tell him. “Derek, I wasn’t planning to live long enough to face you if… I had done that. Derek, please say something.”
In a low voice he said, “I just need some time to think. A lot has happened in the last few weeks. I had to make decisions that affected my life forever. I watched as I lost my niece. I lost my brother and at one time I thought I lost you too. So forgive me if I’m a little upset when I feel a little betrayed.”
“Betrayed? I would never betray you Derek. I had to do what I needed to do. Just like all the times you had to make decisions about saving Earth.”
“By giving yourself to someone else!?” he snapped at her. His reaction to her made her step back. Fear came over her face as he punched her wall. He turned to her and he realized how frightened she was at his reaction. “My God, Nova, I’m sorry. It’s just that it’s really hard coming back here. Alex is gone and Sasha. To tell you the truth Nov, I was avoiding you since I came back. I haven’t even gone back to the house either. I needed to know what I was going to do with Alex’s things. ”
“Where have you been staying?” she had to ask, considering she had been to their house and left messages on the door.
“Venture let me stay at his place until I got the courage to come see you.” He looked down to the floor. She stepped closer to him and put her arms around his neck. Looking into his eyes he finally looked back at her. “Nova …I just don’t know what to do with his things.” Then broke down and cried. She held him tight her heart breaking for him. He was literally an orphan now. The lost of his brother finally took its toll on him. He lost him not once but twice and this time he wasn’t coming back. “Nova, all I have is you now.”
“Derek you have a bigger family then you think! Mark is your friend and a brother to you. Sandor is like your older brother and of course you have me. Always.” She said softly then gently kissed him on the lips. “I love you so much Derek. Please try to forgive me. I need you to understand why I would’ve done it.”
“I understand Nova. I just get so jealous of you with anyone except me. I love you too, with all my heart.” He whispered into her ear as he pulled her closer to him.
“It’s late and you look pretty beat. If you like I can go with you to the house tomorrow.”
Nodding his head he wiped the tears from his face and hers and said “I’d like that very much. I guess I should start looking for another place to live. I really don’t want to stay there anymore.”
“There’s an apartment opening up here maybe Singleton can arrange for you to get it. I think it’s just like mine.”
“Shame that we can’t live here together, He tried to smile and make her laugh.
“Hmm, come on let’s get some rest…” she took his hand and led him into her room. Laying down she held him in her arms as he drifted off to sleep.
He sat in his brother’s room looking through his clothes. They worked on Alex’s room last, working from the rest of the house. Nova took time off to help him with the packing. On top of the dresser sat a picture of his parents and one of his brother and niece. Picking up the picture of his parents he took it out of the frame and placed it into his pocket. The room stood as he left it the day they were attacked. Sasha’s crib stayed in the corner of the room. Alex’s bed was made with one of his uniforms lying on the side of the bed. The chair sat next to the crib as if it was waiting for someone to sit on it. Nova walked in with a sandwich for him and placed it on the bed. She looked around and looked at some of the boxes that were already filled. Picking up the picture of Sasha and Alex, she smiled at it then looked up to Derek. “He was a great dad, Derek.”
“He was an awesome big brother too. I just regret that we fought before I left.”
“You shouldn’t blame yourself for anything, Derek. He had to go through his pain in order to be strong for Sasha. I’m sure he has long forgiven you about it. Now you have to forgive yourself.”
“I left her there Nova. I left Sasha. We could have saved her. Or at least tried.” He said trying not to cry. She placed her hand on his back in silences knowing this was one of the most difficult things he would have to do. Wiping the tears from his face he looked up at her and smiled. “I guess I should finish packing all this stuff so we can take it down to the shelters. I’m sure someone down there could use it.”
“Derek, its’ okay to keep some of his things,” she said as she picked up a watch that Alex wore. Taking his hand she placed the watch on his wrist. “It looks good on you.” She kissed him all so gently then smiled at him. “You need to eat something, I made you a sandwich. Come and eat.” She sat down on the bed and motioned him to sit across from her.
“I’m not really hungry, Nov.”
“You have to eat, now come sit and eat.” She said with a stern voice. Rolling his eyes at her, he gave her a crooked smile and sat down across from her.
“You know you can be a little pushy.”
“You have no idea how pushy I can be! Now eat,” Nova said, shoving the sandwich into his hand.
“Well looks like we might have to postpone our big day.”
“Looks like it,” she said looking away from him with sad eyes. He reached his hand across and touched hers. “It’s alright…Derek. We couldn’t predict what happened. Right now we have to think about those that lost their loved ones. And you need to grieve for your family. Just knowing that you’re here with me is all I need. I don’t need to be married for that.”
“Your something else you know that. I couldn’t ask for a better future wife. You know that sounds pretty good to call you my wife. Maybe I’ll just start introducing you as my wife from now on.” He tried to make her laugh.
She smiled at him then let out a mischievous giggle. “Shame though, you won’t get all the benefits that as husband and wife we would have.”
He stopped laughing at her remark. “That’s just not right, Nov,” he gave her a serious face then began to laugh with her again. They talked more and she made him finish his sandwich before they started back on Alex’s things. He kept a pair of baby shoes of Sasha’s and Alex’s watch with some other personal items. They put the boxes into the cars and then went back in to the house. He looked around and sighed. “Well, the truck comes tomorrow to take some of the stuff to my apartment. The other stuff is getting divided between the shelter and orphanage. Thanks for everything, Nova.”
“Hey that’s what I’m here for. Let’s go and eat something…I’m starved.”
“You know I could eat something myself.” He said rubbing his stomach. She smiled at him knowing he was starting to get back to his old self. “I love you Ms. Forrester.”
“Hey I thought I was already your wife. Shouldn’t you call me Mrs. Wildstar?”
“Mrs. Wildstar, hmm that sounds really nice. So can we consummate our union?” he winked at her as she laughed.
They sat in her kitchen eating noodles that they ordered from a store down from their apartment building. Derek sat quiet while she poured him another cup of tea. She could see his eyes gazing into nothing. She placed her hand on his and tried to get his attention. Looking up he tried to smile as she saw the tears in his eyes. “Hey, let’s go see what we’re going to do to your apartment.” She said jumping off the stool and taking his hand.
“Not now Nova. Tomorrow, the truck will be there and we can knock it out then.”
“Oh come, we can use our imagination. You still remember how to use that don’t you?” she smiled at him.
Finally smiling at her he got up and followed her to the door. “You’re right… I have no idea how pushy you are.”
“You got that right ,Commander.”
Making the call the next morning, he showed up at her door step. Nova spoke to Singleton and he made arrangements to get him the apartment two floors above Nova’s place. Opening the door they stepped in and turned on the light. “Wow, it looks bigger Derek.”
“That’s because it’s empty.” He said looking around.
“Derek, you can put the couch here near the fireplace. A few bar stools here and it will bring the whole room together.” He watched her walk around the room and smile to himself at how she put her touches into it. “Some masculine curtains will make it just like a bachelor pad.”
“I didn’t know they had masculine curtains.” He laughed at her.
“Oh shut up. You know what I mean. Nothing girly.” She said walking into the bedroom. “Oh MY GOD!!!” he heard her yell.
Hearing her scream he ran into the room. “What! What’s wrong? Is it a bug?”
“Your closet is bigger!” she snapped at him. “And your bathroom is bigger too! I hate you!”
He couldn’t help but laugh at her. “Bigger closet huh. What would you give me to switch apartments?”
“A right hook.” she said, threatening to punch him in the face.
“Ouch, that’s assault on a superior officer! I can have you brought up on charges, Lieutenant Commander,” he said, making them both laugh. “Hey we can switch apartments if you like.”
“You’re sweet but it’s okay. I can always put something in here to mark my territory,” She gave him a wink.
He laughed at her knowing there was a little jealousy in her heart and he liked that. “What makes you think I would have anyone else other then my MALE friends in here? AND what would you leave here anyway?”
Walking over to him she put her arms around his waist, pulling him close to her. “First of all you’d better never have another woman in here. Second of all there are lots of things I can leave here guaranteeing to let any woman who gets in here know that you are taken. And remember that I am only 2 flights down and can see all. Come on… you can stay at my place tonight and we can start the minute the truck gets here.”
Two weeks later . . . .
Derek settled into his new apartment with Nova’s help and was set to report to the Academy after he got his brother’s affairs in order. The wake and ceremony was a somber one for him. Nova stood close to him holding his hand. With every parishioner that approached the podium, he squeezed her hand tighter. Nova went back to the hospital to help with all the casualties. The bridge crew met at his apartment a few days later to give him a house warming party. They sat around talking about the battle and their fallen comrades. Dash stood in the corner talking with Sandor over his marriage. “Sandor, I can’t believe she left me for that prick! After I told her I’d still love her, even if she couldn’t have kids. Now she has the nerve to tell me that she wants some kind of support until she gets remarried. She’s got some balls!” he slammed his fist on a table then taking another swallow of beer. “She must be high on bat shit if she thinks that she’s going to get another penny out of me!”
“Whoa there, Dash.” Sandor said slapping him on the back. “I’ll tell you what…I’ll give you the name of my divorce lawyer. He’s really good and he’ll get you out of the marriage before the end of the year.”
Wildstar and Venture stood in his kitchen listening in as Dash went on about his soon to be-Ex. “I really feel bad for him,” Venture said. “But to tell you the truth I had a funny feeling that she was seeing someone else. I thought I saw her kissing some guy when I was coming out of EDF Headquarters the other day with Dash. She was supposed to have lunch with him and I was surprise he didn’t catch that.”
“Did you mention it to him?”
“No Wildstar, I wasn’t getting in the middle of that fight. That woman has some major issues. I can’t believe he put up with her this long.”
“What’s this I hear that she couldn’t have kids?”
“Gosh, you haven’t heard?” Venture looked at him confused. “I’m surprised Nova hasn’t told you. Story is…when we got back from Iscandar a lot of men and their wives tried to start families. After months of trying they went to go see their doctors. Little by little, the doctors began to exchange notes and found out that many of them were sterile from the planet bombs’ radiation. That’s why a lot of the guys got divorces. They found women who could have kids. Derek, have you and Nova talked about having kids yet?”
“No, not really, but I think that she would have told me if anything was wrong.”
“Maybe it’s something you two should talk about before you get married. That way you both are not caught off guard, putting stress on your relationship.”
“Venture… I love Nova no matter what. And if we find out that she can’t have kids then we will talk about adopting a kid. There are so many that lost their parents in all these wars looking to be adopted,” he said. It’s something that they didn’t think of and he felt that his friend was right. This is something they had to discuss before they got married. He wanted her to know that he would love her no matter what. He excused himself from his friend and went into his bedroom. Closing the door behind him he took hold of his phone and dialed her number. It rang three times before he heard her voice. “Hello?” he heard her say. “Hey there, did you just get home?”
“As a matter of fact, yes I did. What’s up?”
“Oh nothing the guys are here breaking in my new place.”
“Oh, should I be worry? I mean all that testosterone in one room is not a good sign!”
“I doubt if they’re going to call the riot patrol out on us. I missed you today. Would you mind if I stop down later?”
“Not at all but wouldn’t you rather be with your friends right now?”
“I’d much rather spend my time with you.”
“Alright, see you soon.”
Hanging up he looked towards his door and thought, ‘now, just how to get rid of them.’ He walked out as Sandor got Dash’s jacket and Venture held on to him. Dash, now looking drunk, mumbled on about his wife while Sandor put on his jacket. “Sorry, Wildstar but I think he drank too much. We’re going to take him to my place to sleep it off,” Sandor explained as Venture held Dash up by throwing Dash’s arm around his neck.
“Hey, Sandor you mind? He’s not light.” Venture struggled to hold him up. “How can such a skinny guy weigh so much is beyond me?” Venture said his face crossed while sweat dripped down his forehead.
“Take care of him Sandor, I’ll check on him tomorrow. Thanks for stopping by,” Derek said, shaking his hand then he nodded in Venture’s direction. “Venture, see you tomorrow.” One by one they began to go relieving Wildstar from throwing them all out. He quickly grabbed his spare keys and ran out his door down the stairs to Nova’s place. Letting himself in he found her at the kitchen table reading some plans still in her scrubs. “Hey!”
“So how was your house warming?”
“Hmm, a bunch of men griping about their next assignment isn’t much of a house warming. I only wish you were there.” He walked over to her and took hold of her hand. “Come here, I’ve missed you all day. How was your day?”
“Many of the minor cases were released today, but we still have a long ways to go on the major cases.”
“What’s that you’re looking at?”
“The plans for the renovation of the house. It looks like it’s going to take a while before they finish. Here this is the new kitchen. I want to open it up to the patio. And the patio is going to wrap all the way to our room. The office upstairs will get all new bookshelves for you. And the outside is getting done in stone that’s going to go all around the house. Did you know that this area here is also approved for a guest house? We may not be able to do that project right away but at least we can do it in the future.” How he loved her more at that moment as she went on about the house. The thought of what Venture told him kept coming back into his mind. She saw his face frown, “Derek, am I going on too much about the house?”
“No, no baby. I love what you’re doing.”
“What’s wrong, Derek?”
“Nothing baby, just a little beat from my party.”
“Derek I know you better then that! You have that certain look on your face. Something is on your mind. So what’s up?”
“How about some wine?” he said trying to avoid her stare. “Where are the glasses?”
“Derek, talk to me! Something is up and your avoiding the subject isn’t going to stop me from asking. Now sit. I’ll get the wine.” She pointed to the chair as she got up and got a bottle of Pink Zinfandel (her favorite wine) and glasses. Taking the bottle from her he opened it and then poured it into the glasses. “Thank you, now talk!”
“Nova I would love you no matter what… you know that, right?” he stared deep into her eyes.
“Well I should hope so! I love you too. But baby, what’s bugging you?”
“Well you know that Dash is getting a divorce. He was at the house drowning his sorrows in beer. She found someone else. Well, Venture and I were talking about his situation, how she wasn’t able to have kids. Well we got to talking about how so many women were diagnosed unable to have kids from the radiation. And well I, well I….”
“You think that maybe we should find out before we got married if I was able to have kids?” She finished for him. She saw firsthand how so many marriages fell apart because of it. There were too many to count that Doctor Sane had to tell the bad news to. She had to sit with so many wives consoling them on how they would approach their spouses so she knew sooner or later she would have to deal with his questioning.
His face softened as he took hold of her hand and squeezed it. “Nova, I wouldn’t care whether you could or couldn’t. I love you too much to let something like that keep us apart. We can always adopt.”
Her heart melted at what he said. “Derek you don’t have to worry about me. After we got back from Iscandar the first time, Doctor Sane gave me a thorough exam. My luck was the Cosmo DNA. If there was anything wrong with me before then, it’s just fine now. I can guarantee you that we will be able to have kids.”
Relieved at what she told him he grabbed her by the arm pulling her up off the chair. “I would still love you no matter what. But it’s good to know that we can.”
“You know you are so cute. I love you very much. And thank you for being such a great guy to even think about adopting. So many men have no sense as to loving someone no matter the problem. The minute life gives them a curve they run for the hills.” She looked deep into his eyes and could see his eyes twinkling. “You on the other hand, hmm. You’re a good man, Derek Wildstar and I love you.”