He had some major grovelling to do.
Drake knew this wasn’t going to be easy. Rachel was so angry. She had every right to be, he’d hurt her deeply, although the choices he had made were what he thought was best at the time, to try to keep her alive and off the radar of the gang he’d been trying to bring down, now he knew it was a mistake.
He should have taken his pregnant wife and run when he realised his cover was blown.
But he’d been arrogant.
Thinking he was too smart and that he could have it all, his family and the gang brought to their knees.
Instead he’d been almost killed, Rachel had been raped and tortured and ended up losing their unborn daughter and very nearly her own life, and now it looked like he had lost her for good.
There was so much to explain but he didn’t know where to start. The beginning he guessed, it was as good a place as any.
Drawing in a deep breath Drake stepped into Rachel’s hospital room.
He had stayed with her, clutching her in his arms, as cops descended on the house. He had refused to leave her side as she was bundled into the ambulance, and had sat beside her bed until she woke up. Then, like the coward it was turning out he was, he’d left, not wanting to upset her again.
“Hi, Rach,” he said tentatively as he entered her room.
Her eyes snapped towards him, a mixture of anger and hurt shining in them. The anger he could take it was the hurt that knifed straight through his heart. He hated that he had caused the woman he loved pain.
“I was hoping I could talk to you,” Drake ignored Rachel’s glower and sat beside her.
“Leave, Drake,” she ordered, her voice weak. She’d lost a lot of blood from the knife being plunged into her shoulder, but she’d live.
“I can’t. Not until I explain. I never meant to hurt you. I thought I was protecting you. That night, when they were torturing us, knowing it was all my fault that you were being hurt, that crushed me. I blacked out, when I woke up I was in a hospital. The first thing I did was ask about you and they told me that my contact in the gang had somehow gotten us both out alive, that you were alive, and safe, but that our baby hadn’t made it. That killed me, Rach. I wanted to be there for you, but I was too weak, and they told me that the gang believed I was dead, they said if I went to you I’d be putting you in danger all over again. That was the only reason I didn’t tell you I was alive. I couldn’t let you be hurt again because of me. I was supposed to stay away from you but I couldn’t I’ve been watching the house for the last couple months. I should have told you, Rachel, I’m sorry.” Everything he’d been wanting to say to her for the last six months came tumbling out in a rush.
“You’re sorry?” she demanded. “Sorry. You’re so selfish, Drake. You want to make this all about you but I was there too. I was kicked and beaten, cut and burned, raped. I went into premature labor. I had to deliver our baby on my own, without you there. I had to grieve her, I had to grieve you. I went to your funeral. I sat for months thinking I was all alone in the world. I cried for you, I cried for our daughter. Alone. You made me do that alone and you think sorry is good enough?”
“No, I don’t,” he answered. “Sorry is never going to make things better. But I’m here now and whatever you need me to do to make this up to you, you just tell me and I’ll do it.”
“Give me the last six months back,” Rachel shrieked. “Give me back my daughter and my husband. Can you do that? No, of course not. There’s nothing you can do.” Tears were streaming down her face and she quickly becoming hysterical. “Can you take away all the pain I felt? Can you take away all the days I cried until I was drained and empty? Can you take away the hole you put in my heart?”
“No,” he said quietly. He hadn’t expected this to be easy but it was so much harder than he’d imagined. He had thought Rachel would scream at him for faking his death but then throw herself into his arms, so glad to have him back that everything else melted away. Instead she was so hurt he wasn’t sure there was hope for them to reconcile.
“Just go, Drake. Leave me alone. I don’t want to see you, I don’t want to talk to you, I don’t want you to contact me or call me.”
He never cried but right now tears stung his eyes. This couldn’t be goodbye, it couldn’t be how things ended between them. “I love you, Rachel.”
“I know you do, thats what makes this hurt so much more. Go, please. You said you’d do whatever I asked, and I’m asking you to go.”
As much as it killed him, Drake had to respect her wishes.
Quietly he stood and walked out the door without one last look back, it was too hard to see her sitting there with her dark eyes twin bottomless pools of pain.
Outside the door, he paused, “Goodbye my Snow White,” he whispered.