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Old 10-15-2006, 12:13 PM   #1
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Someone Else's Dream - Chapter 12

U2, unfortunately, are not mine. They are real people who I have written about here in a fictional situation that never happened. I don’t have their permission to use their likenesses, but I make no money from the story and it really is just all meant in good fun. Remember, please, that this is just a twisting, turning story out of my imagination which should not reflect upon the band or the individuals within it. It’s only make-believe. There will be some adult themes within this story, and almost undoubtedly a lot of offensive language. Read at your own discretion.

Catalina Chronicles Book 4:

Someone else’s dream

Chapter Twelve

And now I'm standing on the corner, all the world's gone home
Nobody's changed, nobody's been saved
And I'm feeling cold and alone
I guess I'm lucky, I smile a lot
But sometimes I wish for more than I've got...
What about me? It isn't fair
I've had enough, now I want my share
Can't you see, I wanna live
But you just take more than you give…


from ‘What about me?’ by Moving Pictures

Bono sat on the corner of the doctor’s desk and stared her down in his boyish way which somehow managed to be charming and not intimidating. Laney had made herself comfortable in one of the two stuffed but still uncomfortable chairs on the patient’s side of the desk. She watched Bono greet the woman, whom he’d only met twice before, as if she were an old friend. Dr. Finley blushed under the attention, as most women did when they found themselves under the weight of Bono’s gaze.

“I hope you’ve some good news for us, then, Dr. Finley?” Bono said, and Laney studied her colleagues face for some hint of what was to come. Her heart sank at the way the woman’s gaze fell away from Bono, unable to meet his eyes with her own. Her lips pursed into a thin line and her brow furrowed.

“First of all, I want to reassure you that modern medicine, although most of us prefer to pretend otherwise, is not fool-proof. There are plenty of cases which baffle us, cases of people who’ve tried for years to get pregnant and who give up trying, only to get pregnant within months,” She said, and Bono nodded along. Laney’s heart ached at the frown which transformed his handsome face, though.

“Bono, your tests have come back perfectly normal, there is no problem with you so far as we can tell. Motility and count were both a bit high, for a man your age as a matter of fact,” She said, perusing the paperwork in front of her on the desk as she spoke. “Dr. Hewson…”

“Laney, please. Call me Laney.”

“Laney. Your hormone levels were all within the normal range, right where we like to see them, which is great news. The HSG test revealed blockages in both fallopian tubes…”

“Endometriosis?” Laney asked, and Dr Finley nodded.

“How serious is endro-me-tree-osis?” Bono asked, looking back and forth between the two women, his tongue twisting over the strange new word as he spoke. “Remember, we’re not all doctors here,” he added, forcing a slight chuckle.

“Endometriosis is a thickening of the endometrial fluid inside the uterus; which is normal sloughed off at the end of a woman’s monthly menstrual cycle. With this condition, not all of it drains as normal, but can go up into the fallopian tubes and ovaries and cause blockages and scar tissue. If the fallopian tubes are blocked, the egg never reaches the uterus and so there is nothing there for sperm to fertilize,” doctor Finley explained.

“So you’ll want to do laparoscopy, to remove the blockages?” Laney asked, having been doing her own share of research on the causes and treatments of infertility.

“Yes. Most of the time, that is all it takes to make it possible for the woman to achieve a normal pregnancy.”

“Not all of the time, though?” Bono asked, moving away from the desk to settle into the chair next to Laney’s, reaching out to clasp her hand in his own.

“There are other possible complications,” The doctor informed him with a tired sigh. She had been doing this for a long time now, but the longing in the eyes of her patients still got to her. She could, and did, help a great many of them, but it was always a struggle, to varying degrees, to achieve the dream of a child. “For one thing, Endometriosis tends to recur. So, removing the blockages once is not a guarantee that we won’t have to do it again. Also, if the blockage is mostly scar tissue, we may have to do a more traditional surgery, rather than laparoscopy. Recovery time from being completely anesthetized and opened up is six to eight weeks, with all of the risks of standard surgery.”

“There’s also the theory of Macrophages, an immune response to sperm and embryo’s. A woman’s own body attacking them as if they were a virus,” Laney added sadly.

“That theory hasn’t been proven, yet,” Doctor Finley tried to reassure her. “Let’s take one step at a time. We’ll try to laparoscopy, and that may be all there is to do. Even if that doesn’t work, there’s always In Vitro Fertilization.”

“Test tube babies,” Bono said, chewing on his thumbnail absently.

“There is only a 20% to 30% chance of success with each attempt of In Vitro Fertilization,” Laney informed the doctor, although it was something she would obviously know already.

“There are clinics claiming up to 50% success now,” Dr. Finley corrected. “And as I said before, fertility medicine is difficult to predict. Life takes root on its own time and in its own way, and all we can really do is try our best to facilitate that. Some people seem to think science and medicine are separate from God or that they try to disprove God’s existence… in the two decades I’ve been practicing medicine I’ve been convinced over and over again that God is real and takes an active role in each of our lives.”

Bono nodded in agreement and gave Laney’s hand a squeeze. Neither of them knew what to say. They had come here looking for answers, and now they had them. It was going to require patience and effort, but it wasn’t impossible that they could still have a baby. Laney knew this, in her logical mind. Her heart, however, was breaking as it confronted the odds against that happening.

She had never been a selfish woman, or at least she had certainly fought back her selfish urges as often as she could. She had made a life of helping people when they were in pain or dangerously ill, had given freely of her time and talents to charity, and had been devoted to one man for most of her adult life (even though he didn’t know it for most of that time). Now that she wanted, really wanted something for herself, something which so many people could achieve with ease, it was hard not to wonder ‘why me?’.

*****************************************************

“Daddy!” Pauley’s scream of excitement could easily be heard from Lorna’s bedroom where Simone was getting out pajamas and trying to get Lorna to settle down for the night. Her heart did somersaults at the thought of him. She had barely slept since speaking to him the other night, her mind had been working overtime and her stomach had been churning constantly. She was in over her head here, clearly. In any other relationship she would have been long gone by now. She wasn’t entirely certain why she was still here.

She looked down into the silver blue eyes of her little girl and knew it had plenty to do with her. It also had to do with how much Pauley loved Larry, and how deeply Larry loved him as well. She had a lot more on the line these days than her own feelings and needs to think about.

There was more to it than the kids, though. She wanted to be with him. She worried about him, when they were apart. Worried that he was healthy, happy. She lived for the times when she could make him smile. And, yes, she loved the way he made her feel. Usually. He made things simple, with his black and white logic and matter-of-fact ways. Not that she always agreed with him, or understood him, but he accepted that and she accepted him for what he was.

Grown-up love, Simone had labeled it. It wasn’t always as exciting and romantic as youthful fantasies about the nature of love, but it was good. Better than she ever knew it could be. But it was worse, too. There seemed to be no way around hurting each other, when you were in love. No matter how careful you were not to, when two lives were so deeply enmeshed every little thing one did effected the other.

She had tried to convince herself that she could make decisions about Pauley without involving Larry, but it had proved an impossible task. She had thought, somehow, by avoiding marriage vows, she would maintain some independence. She had been mistaken; she needed him just as much and without the vows to bind them together there was less security. She felt like she was standing in quicksand, sometimes. The harder she struggled to save herself, the deeper she sank.

She scooped Lorna up and kissed her on the forehead and hurried out to the kitchen to see that the door had been flung open and forgotten as Pauley had rushed out into the night to greet Larry. She could see Larry kneeling and opening his arms to him, Pauley wrapping his arms around Larry’s neck and clinging to him. Larry hugged the boy for a long moment, his eyes closed as if saying a silent prayer. Simone wondered if it was a prayer of thanks or asking for strength.

Larry opened his eyes and saw her standing in the doorway, and she smiled instinctively. No matter what lay before them, between them, she was happy to see him.

Pauley refused to let go, even after Larry did, and so he lifted the boy and carried him into the house, one arm still wrapped around his shoulders possessively.

“Mommy, Daddy’s home!” he announced, as if she had somehow missed it.

“I see that, sweetheart,” Simone replied with a chuckle. Larry smiled at her in gentle amusement, pausing beside her to kiss Lorna on top of the head, making her squeal and reach for him. She kicked her legs and whined, pudgy little arms reaching out for him, until he gave in and took her in one arm, Pauley still supported by the other. It was a scene that would warm any mother’s heart.

“Hi,” he told her awkwardly, both of them laughing at that.

“Hi!” She replied through her laughter, leaning in to place a gentle kiss on his lips.

“He got your hair cut,” Pauley pointed out the obvious again as Simone led them into the living room, where Larry sank into a seat, collapsing under the weight of his children’s attention and affection.

“I see that, too,” Simone told him. What a difference it made, Simone thought. He looked ten years younger with his hair cut short. She wasn’t sure she liked it; she had loved running her fingers through his long blonde locks. Plus, this short buzz cut reminded her a little too much of her father and brothers. Still, he was as handsome as ever, she had to admit.

She doubted he could do much to change that.

She sat patiently, watching and listening as Larry was assaulted by a barrage of questions about where he had been, told a thousand stories of the sorts of things which Pauley had learned in his absence, and begged by Lorna to play ‘daddy-cake’. She had not yet learned that the name of the game, involving the clapping of hands against her legs or the table top and then clapping together of hands with another person was called ‘Patty-cake’, associating the rhythmic nature of the game with daddy, instead.

He helped Simone to get the kids changed into their pajama’s and tucked into bed a little while later, lingering over Lorna’s crib for a moment as if wanting to delay what came next. Simone felt the tears begin to burn her eyes at the thought. She knew, deep in her gut, what he was going to tell her. She had known the moment the phone rang and she saw Cat’s number, heard his voice at the other end of the line.

She had known he had feelings for her. She had also known he thought he’d kept them hidden completely, leaving her in the dark about it. She was more observant than that, however. It wasn’t hard to see, if you were around them enough. He would get so mad at her, and that sort of anger was full of passion. Passion was not difficult to swing in the other direction. She had never been jealous, though; not really. Cat loved Adam, clearly. It had seemed like an innocent crush, at most.

They settled back down in the living room, on opposite ends of the couch. The bedroom didn’t seem like the appropriate place to talk, not tonight. For a long while, they sat in silence, fidgeting awkwardly.

“I’m … Simone, I fucked up,” Larry finally said, all of the breath leaving his body in a single exhalation as if he were deflating.

“Really?” Simone retorted, her tone much sharper than she had intended. “I thought you fucked Cat.” Her words struck him harder than the coffee mug Cat had thrown at him the night before. She saw the muscles in his jaw flex as he gritted his teeth, saw him flinch at her verbal attack, and felt the bizarre urge to apologize to him. She frowned inwardly at this strange feeling and reminded herself she was the one who had been cheated on.

“It wasn’t… I don’t know what to say, Simone. I can’t change the fact that I went to Memphis because I was pissed off. It was just one mistake of many. I was stupid and jealous and felt shut out. None of those things are excuses for turning to someone else, I know… I never … I wish I had something I could say that wasn’t shite, but I don’t. It was a stupid, selfish choice that I made and I am so sorry. I don’t know what else to say,” He told her, his hand rubbing at his nose and chin frequently, his eyes blinking far more often than usual.

Was he near tears? Simone’s heart ached. She’d only seen him that way twice. On the first night they had made love he’d cried, afterwards. Just a little, not sobbing or weeping but he’d had teary eyes and there had been a tremble in his touch when he’d drawn her close. She’d never acknowledged it to him. It had been one of the special memories she kept locked up in her heart, something to cherish on the long, lonely stretches while he was on tour.

The other time was the night Lorna was born. He’d been the first to hold her, even before Simone. He’d lowered her face to hers and nuzzled noses with her, and she’d reached up and touched his face with her hands. Simone had been exhausted that night, but she knew that she had not imagined the tears he’d wiped away.

“So what do we do now?” She asked, her voice considerably softer than it had been before. He looked visibly relieved.

“I guess that’s really up to you,” he said.

“I don’t know, Larry. I don’t have a clue where we go from here. Usually, I would leave. That’s what I have always done when someone hurt me,” Simone told him, her voice breaking, and her jaw quivering. “But I don’t want to leave you.”

“I don’t want to lose you, Simone. I love you, that hasn’t changed.”

“How do I know you aren’t thinking of her when you touch me? How do I know you aren’t biding your time with me, waiting for Cat …” She asked, angrily wiping away the tears that burned their way down her cheeks.

“I don’t want to be with her, Simone. I don’t know how to make you understand that… I don’t understand what I feel about her, myself! But I know, know! that I want to be with you. I want to be a family with you. Just like I have since we started seeing each other.”

“I want that too,” she told him with a sniffle and a weak nod, unable to look up into his eyes. “How do we do that, though?”

“Marry me,” He blurted out, looking as surprised as she was when he heard his own voice. Simone almost laughed, but managed to catch herself.

“You’re only saying that because I’ve turned you down before,” She replied lightly.

“I mean it; I know it isn’t going to make everything magically better, but…” Larry started, obviously at a loss for a way to explain what he was thinking.

“You would really get up in front of a group of people and promise to love and honor me for the rest of your life?” She sounded more than a little disbelieving.

“Yes, I would. I will. I didn’t know how important it was until this happened, but we’re right together, you and me. I don’t want to be without you,” he told her, emotions suddenly spilling from him as they had not since he was much younger. He moved toward her, taking her face in his hands and rubbing her cheeks with the pads of his thumbs. “Marry me,” he asked again, his voice a whisper, as he leaned his forehead against hers.

“Yes,” she told him on a breath as it rushed from her lungs. She wasn’t sure which one of them was more surprised, the way Larry lifted his head, his blue eyes wide, and his full lips parting in shock.

“Really?” He asked, blinking in disbelief this time, rather than to fight back tears.

“No, not really. I thought that would be a really funny joke, and we could have a good laugh about it,” Simone said, rolling her eyes. “Of course, really, you dumb ass. I want to marry you.”
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Old 10-15-2006, 12:26 PM   #2
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ARGGG!!!! now I still have to wait to find out what happens to Adam and Cat!

Great story by the way!
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Old 10-15-2006, 12:42 PM   #3
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Aww!
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Old 10-15-2006, 09:45 PM   #4
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Wonderful chapter!
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Old 10-16-2006, 03:19 AM   #5
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really good chapter, but i can't wait to see what happens to adam and cat
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Old 10-16-2006, 04:00 AM   #6
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Great chapter SG

Poor Laney & Bono
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Old 10-18-2006, 12:00 PM   #7
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The suspense is killing me SG That is what I love about the chronicals
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