I remember everything Robb said about starting a family, and how optimistic he was towards the end; he truly believed I wouldn’t be taken by Lucifer and that I would be with him now, safe and alive. If I had believed him, then this would be so much worse, but maybe there could have been hope. Maybe if I had believed Robb more, then I could have thought of the option to have a sacrifice – saying that, it’s a pretty obvious thing to think of. Why the fuck didn’t we think of it?
I wouldn’t have used my Dad, obviously, but Lucifer’s right, he would have tried to persuade me he wanted to do it, and Robb would’ve tried to force me to do it, but somehow, I know I couldn’t have done this to my Dad, especially after what I saw. But I wouldn’t have known about that anyway. I still couldn’t have been able to face that.
The other thing: I look the same age as I am now in that vision, yet we have two kids? How is that even possible?
“Good morning,” Lucifer says breezily, sitting beside me on the grass under the tree.
“I was enjoying the peace and quiet,” I say with a roll of my eyes, but he sits with a smile on his face anyway. The cocky arsehole Lucifer is back. I don’t know whether I’m relieved or whether I actually hate it. The cocky Lucifer is hateful, evil, and cunning and I hate him with a vengeance, but I’m not sure I enjoyed the serious Lucifer; he was scarier than this one. At least with the cocky version of him, I know what he wants and how to handle him. I had no idea how to handle the serious him, and I certainly didn’t know what he wanted with me.
“You can carry on enjoying it… after we’ve spoken, or we could just sit here for a little longer while you enjoy it,” Lucifer says with a smile.
“I think I’d rather get whatever the Hell you want over with so I don’t have to put up with you for much longer,” I say bluntly.
“Well, that is certainly no way to treat your husband is it?”
I look at him, “I am not your wife.”
“Are we going to keep having this argument? Because I for one am absolutely exhausted with it, Naomi,” Lucifer says, the small sly smile still lighting up his face. I really, really have a personal vendetta for this side of him. I absolutely hate him.
“What do you want Lucifer?” I demand, turning my head back to looking straight ahead. There’s nothing other than trees and bushes to look at, but still, it’s better than watching that confident smile that I hate more than anything else.
“I wanted to speak with you about the life you had before you came down here with me,” he says matter of factly, like that happened every single day.
“You mean when I was alive?” I clarify in annoyance.
“Well if you are going to be like that about it, then yes, when you were alive, but when you were alive on Earth. You are still technically alive down here, Naomi, it is just different to when you were up there,” he says.
“You still mean when I was alive,” I tell him, getting annoyed with this shit already. “Just tell me what you need to tell me and the leave me alone, Lucifer. I am really not in the mood for your shit.”
“Touchy, are we not?” Lucifer scoffs. “I only need to speak with you, Naomi, I am not here to do anything to you.”
“What do you want?” I demand, giving him a sideways glance.
“I know what you saw in that vision, obviously, and I know you have questions,” Lucifer says, but he doesn’t carry on like I think he will do.
“Well are you going to answer them, seeing as you’re so fucking clever enough anyway, you probably know what they are,” I snap.
“Wow, we really are touchy today, Naomi,” Lucifer says. “But yes, I do know that you have questions regarding the fact you have children, yet you look remarkably like you did when you died.”
“When I was alive up there,” I correct with a roll of my eyes.
“Details,” Lucifer waves it off. “But the answer lies in the fact that the vision it is about a year in the future from when you died.”
“So in twenty-fourteen?” I ask and he nods when I look back at him. “The child is a toddler, so it still doesn’t add up, Lucifer.”
“That child is a year old,” Lucifer says. “Or, just about anyhow. You had the child the fifth of April twenty-fourteen and the vision was of December twenty-fourteen. The child was nigh on eight months old.”
I narrow my eyes and stare at the biggest tree ahead of me, working that out. How could I have had the child in April of next year? It doesn’t add up.
He’s just playing one of those fucking stupid mind tricks again, I know it. Thinks he can get into my head, play some stupid ass joke and think it can wind me up. Not this time.
I chuckle. “Whatever, Lucifer. You’re just trying to wind me up. The whole fucking vision shit was a lie, wasn’t it? Wind me up, make me think I could have had a way out, that my life up there was all shit and this was inevitable anyway, make me think I could have had kids, had a proper life, and then take it all away. You just like to watch me suffer, right? Like you did all that time up on Earth, well it isn’t going to work this time. Just get away from me.”
“You think this is my idea of fun?” Lucifer scoffs.
“I know this is your idea of fun, you arsehole. Make me think I could have had kids? None of it adds up. At least do some GCSE maths and some basic biology before you actually try to wind me up with that shit?” I scoff, giving him a filthy look.
“Naomi, think about it for one minute before jumping to any kind of rash conclusions, that actually, are not even correct,” Lucifer sighs. “Think for a minute.”
I roll my eyes, sigh but I do actually think about it. How the Hell can I have an eight month old baby in April next year, and be pregnant with a second… we weren’t even going to consider kids until I’d at least graduated. I mean, we probably wouldn’t have got married till then if the whole Devil thing hadn’t come about, but kids were just out of the question all together. Why the Hell would I be pregnant, and have a nearly one year old? Why? It doesn’t make sense, let alone how because even Robb agreed they were out of the question until we’d or I’d graduated. I still… none of it adds up, especially the timings.
“Nope, I still don’t get it,” I say with a shake of my head. “And you wanna explain it to me right now, because this is completely ridiculous.”
Lucifer nods when I look to him for an answer. I don’t even care if I look desperate, because this time, I am. It’s to do with children, my children. Robb’s children, and I don’t actually think he’s having me on. I see the blue eyes stare at me in seriousness, the same seriousness as he showed me when he showed me the vision, and that alone makes me believe him. I might be completely stupid, and probably naïve, like he tells me every single time he doesn’t like what I say, but I don’t care. Something about the change of tone in that Scottish accent, and something about the way he’s looking at me tells me to believe him.
“Naomi, when you died, three months ago from now… well, that’s the time it has been down here anyhow… when you died up on Earth, you were…” Lucifer starts and hesitates for a minute before carrying on. “You were with child.”
“Excuse me, what?” I choke, laughing to myself. The Hell…?
Lucifer keeps silent and just stares at me with those icy, staring, hard eyes. I look away and down at my wringing hands, my rings glinting at me. I stare past them and to my stomach, as normal as I remember it, no hint of any bump.
“There is absolutely no freaking way…” I chuckle to myself, thinking about the thought. “No, Lucifer, you’re having a laugh. Don’t joke about shit like that. For a moment I thought you were serious…” I look at the Devil’s expression and see his serious stare, haunting me, reminding me of that look he gave me when he turned up in the flat the day he killed me. That needing, wanting, desiring look.
“You… you’re not joking,” I realise, moving quickly from my sitting position to stand on the grass, staring at Lucifer with what wide eyes, letting me take in the shock. How can… how is it… how could…
“What the fuck? How did I not know?” I demand. “How did you know and Robb and I didn’t?”
“Because you were both too busy with trying to outsmart me, you were too busy getting yourselves wed and you were too busy to even stop to think about your practicalities of anything, including protecting…”
“Shut up, shut the fuck up!” I cut him off before he goes further with that thought. I turn away and think to myself: April. April next year… it’s roughly November by Hell time to me, which means when I died in September, I was nigh on three months pregnant when I died; ten weeks to be exact. I never even thought about the fact none of my periods had come since July, it wasn’t something I was thinking about. How… how could I not see or know?
“What… did…? I take you you’ve found a way to tell Robb?” I determine.
“No, I have not told him and he does not know now,” Lucifer tells me.
“And you knew this? When I was alive? Before you decided you wanted me down here?” I demand.
I whirl around, bumping into Lucifer as he’s now standing right in front of me. “You knew when I didn’t, when I was alive? You didn’t tell me? Why didn’t you tell me? Why? You could have told me, told me to take a test, something! I can’t believe you didn’t… why?”
Lucifer doesn’t even laugh. I don’t know why I expect him to, but I do. He usually does anyway. “Because it is not my place to tell you such things, Naomi.”
“But you knew. I didn’t, Robb didn’t, Mia, Isaac, they didn’t. You knew. Don’t you think I would have at least liked to have known that I was pregnant before I died? Because I would’ve, thanks, you egotistical arsehole!” I yell, my voice louder than I think I’ve ever heard it before, I feel the warm salty liquid rolling down my cheeks in regret.
“Would he would have liked to have known, Naomi? Would he really wanted to have known that he was going to be a father, and then watched not only his wife but his unborn child die too?” Lucifer demands, and I stop in my tracks.
He has a point. He has a brilliant point actually: would Robb really want to know that we were about to start a family and then a few days, maybe a week later, lose both members of that family in one fell swoop?
No, he wouldn’t. Of course he wouldn’t want to know that. If I was him, I wouldn’t want to know that, the dark truth. Plus, Robb would be even angrier if he knew Lucifer knew before either of us knew about it. Speaking of…
“How did you know?”
Lucifer finally chuckles, but it quickly fades and the frown lines settle back into his face. “I know just about anything and everything, remember?” I look down at the ground for a moment, realising that I would now be five months gone if I had lived.
I think about what Robb’s face would be like if he were to know, if I could tell him. His entire face would light up, his eyes would sparkle, he would smile from ear to ear, his eyes would wrinkle at the corners, and he’d laugh like nothing I’ve heard before. He’d probably twirl me around and around in the air in happiness till I’d get giddy and threaten to puke on him. He’d probably not stop kissing me, touching my stomach and generally celebrating.
I think about how he would react now, if he knew and I’m still down here. I wonder if he’d blame himself for not trying hard enough to rescue me; I know he would, I know him too well now to know he would.
“But how, when I didn’t even know and it was my own body?” I ask, confused as Hell.
“Because I know these things, Naomi,” Lucifer says, stretching his hands right out.
“Why am I here? Why am I so important? I think now is the right time to tell me, Lucifer, now you’ve told me what I’ve left behind!” I demand, moving back a few steps away from him. He takes one step forward, not breaking the gap between us by much. I watch his eyes sparkle trouble at me, like they usually do.
“I still cannot tell you. Not yet, now isn’t the correct time…”
“It damn well is, because I’m telling you it is! You’ve just told me that I’ve left my family behind. Now you’ll tell me what the fuck is so important you tore me away from that without even telling me!” I roar, pointing my index finger at him, like a petty jab, except I’m still too scared of him to touch him. That’s for when shit truly gets real – well, even more real than they already are.
“You will be told the truth when it is necessary, Naomi Hart, and right now it is not. When it is, however, you will be the first to know,” Lucifer says and disappears.