Bearly Healed:Pacific Northwest Bears(5)

By: Moxie North

“Fine, but I’m only doing it so you won’t be a big baby and start crying again,” Cass snarked.

“I’m hormonal, dumbass. This little one has my emotions all over the place. I can’t be held responsible for anything right now; just ask Dax,” Effie said smugly. “Besides, you try compressing a pregnancy in half and see how hot you feel.” Shifters had gestations based on the animals they were. Cats had relatively short pregnancies. So Effie had only around four months to wrap her head around being a mom.

“You realize that thing is basically a parasite. Feeding off your blood, controlling you. It’s like body snatchers,” Cassie said sternly.

“Well, it’s your little niece or nephew parasite, so you have to love it,” Effie said softly.

“Oh, I already love the little monster, don’t worry. I’ll be its scary Auntie that has to hide away in the shadows and scare the kids on Halloween,” Cass said, looking at her lap. She was trying to be funny, but she knew it was true.

Effie looked at her friend. Her heart was breaking; she had to get her old Cass back. Her baby needed that crazy, wild, try anything aunt in his or her life that was the one they always wanted to hang out with. That would plan naughty adventures together and spoil them rotten.

“Well, I figure you’ll be ready for full time Aunt duty by the time this little one shows up,” Effie said, trying to sound confident.

Cassie didn’t even bother looking up. “I’m still tired,” she said quietly.

“Let’s get you inside then,” Effie said, motioning to Dax.

“Okay, I don’t want to alarm you,” Dax said ominously when he stuck his head in the door. “Connie has made some kind of caramel apple strudel thing that probably has about a pound of sugar in it. In case you were hungry. Now, don’t feel obligated to eat half it of like you normally would just to make her feel better,” he teased.

Cassie offered him a small smile. “Sounds tasty.”

Dax picked her up and carefully got her out through the door. Effie grabbed her crutches. The driver Dax had hired already had all of her luggage up on the porch. Dax and Effie were only staying one night before heading back.

“Oh, there you are my dear!” Connie Rochon exclaimed. She was smiling a big cheerful smile, but her eyes were all too perceptive. “We are so looking forward to spending time with you. This is a very healing place. Surrounded by so much life growing all the time, it’s good for the soul,” she said, patting Cassie’s cheek.

Cassie couldn’t help but flinch when she touched her. It was a kind gesture, but she’d had enough people touching her in the hospital. Always poking and prodding, usually it involved pain.

Connie didn’t miss the flinch either. “This is my husband, Edward. You probably won’t see much of him. He’s either fishing or snoring in his recliner. Feel free to poke him when he gets loud,” Connie said with a giggle that was cute, but at the same time showing her annoyance at her husband’s noisiness.

“Don’t listen to her; I purr like a kitten. Shit, you’re no bigger than a bug. Dax, how do you not lose her in the furniture?” Edward boomed. He was a big man, but apparently all the Rochons were like that.

“Oh, we just use that pointy vacuum attachment. She usually comes right up. I’ll give you a few more tips when we get her inside,” Dax offered.

Cassie gave his arm a pinch for that. He growled back. It almost made her smile.

“Well, young lady, you must be tired. How about we get you settled in? Would you like to be parked in the main room on the couch or straight to your bedroom?” Edward asked.

“Bedroom, please. My medication makes me sleepy,” Cass said quietly.

“Of course, I’ll show you the way,” Edward said gesturing towards the house.

They all trooped in, and Cassie took in the massive log cabin. It was big but still cozy.

“Let me take you on a tour, so you get the lay of the land,” Connie offered. She took them through the house pointing out areas and opening doors.

There was a great room with huge ceilings and a massive fireplace. The room opened to the kitchen. Down a hallway were four bedrooms. Connie pointed out the bathrooms and such as she went.

Bringing her into a room with a large, king size bed, Dax sat her down on the edge of the bed. Cassie looked around; it was sweet. Country charm all the way. From the lace curtains over the window that were above the bed, to the white fluffy comforter that was covered in tiny rosebuds. The bed was made out of real logs and looked like it grew out of the walls.

A dresser and a closet were opposite the bed, which was covered with a number of pillows that would rival even what Effie’s decorator had managed at home. Dax insisted they hire someone since Effie was overwhelmed with the idea of buying so much furniture to fill their huge house. The crazy decorator had a thing for throw pillows.

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